Exploring Theorization of the Coproduction Thesis

Authors: Jennifer Smith*, Indiana University Of Pennsylvania
Topics: Social Theory, Urban Geography, Land Use
Keywords: coproduction, peri-urban
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/14/2018
Start / End Time: 4:00 PM / 5:40 PM
Room: Balcony M, Marriott, River Tower Elevators, 4th Floor
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


The coproduction thesis, which examines how discursive formations and material realities coproduce space, has been infrequently considered in many land use and livelihoods analyses. While the thesis offers considerable insight into the processes through which individuals negotiate the challenges of their everyday lives, there is a gap in the literature exploring this particular conceptualization of coproduction. This paper seeks to expand upon the coproduction thesis, by exploring the many, varied definitions of coproduction as well as common usage of the approach. The paper then expands upon the theoretical underpinnings of coproduction as well as providing empirical evidence that demonstrates the coproduction of peri-urban space. By examining peri-urban, land use, and livelihoods literature, this research highlights the limitations of ignoring either land use or livelihoods within peri-urban analyses. The paper concludes by illustrating the benefits of using the coproduction thesis -- that it sheds light on the multitude of processes contributing to landscape transformation, while not premising one over the others. Similarly, it focuses on both the discursive and material realities in which individuals live through a case study of Polokwane, South Africa.

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