• Summary
  • Contents
  • Subject index

Global Cities and Urban Theory provides an innovative set of approaches to understanding some of the world’s major cities, working with concepts such as smart cities, volumetric urbanism, and critical accounting to illustrate the everyday agents and practices that place cities in the world. Donald McNeill draws on detailed discussions of major cities such as London, San Francisco, Paris and Singapore to provide a deep understanding of how urban theory can be grounded in the cultural economies of urban development. The book: • Reviews the insights of key thinkers such as Bruno Latour, Mike Davis, and Jane M. Jacobs in relation to specific cities. • Highlights methodological and epistemological notes on each theme. • Provides case studies of nine key global cities, examined in the context of specific material and spatial practices. Essential reading for upper level students and researchers across urban studies, urban geography, urban sociology and urban policy.

Centres of Calculation
Centres of Calculation

Desks, filing cabinets, mimeographs, adding-machines, card indexes, desk calendars, telephone extensions, adjustable desk lights. Wire correspondence baskets, erasers, carbon paper, type-brushes, dust rages, waste paper baskets. Pencils, hard and soft, black and blue and red. Pens, nibs, backing sheets, notebooks, paper clips. Gum, paste, stationery: the half dozen sorts of envelopes and letter heads. Tools were these, as important in trade as the masthead and black flag … As important and perhaps to be deemed as romantic some day; witness the rhapsodic advertisements for filing cabinets that are built like battle ships. (Sinclair Lewis, The Job, 1917, in Haigh 2012: 90)

For many years, the ‘central business district’ (CBD) was a key term in explaining urban structure. However, as part ...

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