city branding

Cities are the primary building block of organized human existence. The concept of civilization – as its etymology suggests – rests on the phenomenon of the city and its distinctiveness from life lived beyond its walls. There has always been a powerful identification between a city and an individual inhabitant. It is the oldest bond in organized politics and hence appropriate that the term “citizen” should have been shared with the larger scale polities as they have emerged.

In recent years, the discipline of nation branding has become a new frontier in how nations position themselves to compete for global share of, amongst others, attention, tourism, investment and skills. Cities have become an integral pillar in building strong competitive nation brands because a nation is, after all, a collection of cities - or city brands.

 

Fez, Morocco’s cultural and spiritual capital, may have lagged behind Marrakech when it comes to stylish riads and sophisticated restaurants, but a subtle transformation is under way along its medieval alleyways. Ancient buildings are being restored, designers are breathing new life into age-old crafts and chefs are opening exciting restaurants.

Tulsa Global Alliance (TGA) is working to enhance Tulsa’s reputation as an international hub, says Bob Lieser, vice president of programs for TGA. One way the group is doing that is through its many exchange programs, which enable Tulsans “to make powerful friends in vital countries,” he says.

Luke Dalla Bona, a former Sault resident currently living and working in Ecuador, has a plan to help a small South American community prosper by getting a completely natural product on the market. [...] After the earthquake took a painful bite out of Agua Blanca’s tourism revenue, the villagers, Dalla Bona said, decided to pursue bottling of natural shampoo, using the surrounding forest as a resource.

The relationships between San Antonio and its international counterparts go far beyond ceremonial exchanges of trinkets and the signing of sister-cities proclamations. [...] San Antonio’s first sister city is Monterrey, Mexico — a relationship that predates the creation of Sister Cities International. Since then, the Alamo City has forged sister-city and friendship-city relationships with a dozen others in India, Japan, China, Taiwan and Spain. Tel Aviv, Israel and Darmstadt, Germany, are both “friendship cities.”

Designated car-free zones, intelligent traffic management system, wi-fi spots, 24X7 water supply, smart power system is what you can expect to get under the Smart City project. [...] As in foreign countries, Chandigarh would also have a public bicycle-sharing system. Recently an expression of interest was called from a company that can offer 10,000 cycles at 600 various points in the city.

If the idea of Brand Bengaluru conjures up images of glittering high-rises, a shining IT sector and bad traffic, think again! Brand expert Harish Bijoor, who runs a brand consulting outfit from Bengaluru, has a very different notion of the word ‘branding’. The image of a city, he maintains, is more than its infrastructure, causes and shortcomings

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