Malmös omvandling: från arbetarstad till kunskapsstad. En diskursanalytisk studie av Malmös förnyelse

Sammanfattning: Increasingly cities compete for tourist dollars, shoppers, financial investments, know-how and tax-payers by bolstering the cities images as centers of creativity, innovation, knowledge, art, design and so forth. Accelerated and intensified globalization, technological advances, market deregulations,de-industrializations and socio-economic change have urged cities, especially former industrial cities, to remake their image and to develop a new identity. This dissertation is about the transition of a former industrial city, the city of Malmo’s transformation to a Knowledge City. The aim of this dissertation is to stress how the city’s renewed image is created and how it is interpreted by the citizens of Malmo. Theories guiding the analysis of how Malmo’s renewed image as a Knowledge City has been created are based on the framework of Lefebvre’s trialectic production of space and on Foucault’s discourse technology. Taken together, these theories highlight the active process behind the production of space and the discursive construction supporting the renewal. This means that production of space involves both visual representation and discourse production to frame an attractive image. Media and communication are indeed necessary tools in constructing and transforming societal discourse and in diffusion of city images. Focusing on the communication process and adopting the PR-perspective through a Foucauldian lens, the discourse construction is regarded as a disciplinary process aimed at changing people’s perception of the former industrial city. The interpretation of the transition by the citizens of Malmo illuminates the symbolic struggles and dynamics in between global flows and local sites. The findings are categorized according to Stuart Halls decoding processes based on the distinctions between dominated, oppositional and negotiated reading.