Institutions and Organizations and the Advancement of the Theory of Public Facility Locations

Authors: Carlos Baez*, University of California, Santa Barbara
Topics: Urban and Regional Planning, Location Theory, Economic Geography
Keywords: location science, spatial optimization, urban planning, geography theory, public geography,
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/6/2019
Start / End Time: 9:55 AM / 11:35 AM
Room: Roosevelt 4, Marriott, Exhibition Level
Presentation File: No File Uploaded

In his seminal work, “Toward a theory of urban public facility location” (1968), Michael Teitz called for the development of a theory of the location of public facilities, an area of research he felt had long been ignored by locational theorist. In the decade that followed, his work and independent efforts by other locational scientists led to several theoretical developments that serve as the foundation of most public facility location models that exist today. While these models have become “increasingly sophisticated, inclusive, and contextualized”, the development of a distinct theory for public facilities has not only languished but has regressed with the rise of privatization and non-profit services (Deverteuil, 2000). The premise of this talk is that considering decisions about relevant organization(s) and institutions or at least how institutional or organizational factors shape locational decisions is crucial to the development of theory of public facility location. Institutional and organizational theories are essential for defining and understanding “public” facilities as well the role of public, private, and non-governmental actors in the provision of public services. The predominant managerial location modeling paradigm emphasizes decisions about facility locations, that is, who gets what where? As such, considering institutional and organizational entails also considering how and why? To provide context I will discuss the development of controversial urban on-demand transportation services including ridehailing services (e.g. Uber), bikesharing, and shared-scooters.

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