At the beginning of January this year, Italy’s foreign ministry launched a new internal structure: the Directorate for Culture and Public Diplomacy. The ministry’s website explained the innovation in these terms...KEEP READING
New Paper on Food-Branding Places
Olof Bergand, head of the Stockholm Program of Place-branding (STOPP) and Guje Sevón, Professor Emerita at Stockholm School of Economics, recently published a paper titled “Food-branding places – A sensory perspective” in which they explore how food is used to brand places. The paper, which was published in the November 2014 issue of Place Branding and Public Diplomacy, touches on topics related to both gastrodiplomacy and nation branding and explores the notion of "sensescapes."
This article takes as its starting point the observation that food, meals and gastronomy are frequently used in the branding of places. The knowledge of how and why this takes place is, however, rather limited, and the aim of this article is thus to identify and describe the role of food, meals and gastronomy in the direct and indirect branding of places. The article contains three main sections, where the first is a clarification of key concepts and the methodology applied. The second part is an account of the ways in which food is used in branding places, based on the observations we have made as part of a multisite field study of large metropolitan cities. The third part of the article is a tentative and illustrated conceptual framework, based on the assumption that places can be seen as sensescapes. Food, meals and gastronomy contribute to the spatial configuration (sensory topography), time-space flow (orchestration) and iconography (sensory mapping) of these place-sensescapes. The conclusion of the article is that the character of a place does not only affect the experience of food and gastronomy in that place, but also that food and gastronomy is – directly and indirectly – affecting the character of the place and its brand-image.
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