The Politics of Consultation in Urban Development and Its Encounters with Local Administration

  • Anne Vogelpohl


Urban policies are increasingly influenced by globally operating experts. Vogelpohl’s paper addresses tactics and techniques of private management consultancies to gain influence on cities. These experts on market economies have become particularly powerful to draft urban future strategies in late-neoliberal times. The paper discusses the general role of experts in neoliberal reason, and then, with a focus on the two German cities Essen and Berlin, analyzes how consultancies proceed through comparative, visionary, simplifying, and activating techniques. Resulting policy strategies, however, eventually differ from political practice and local administrations break with the consulting schemes through contextualizing, participating, opening, and slowing. The paper thus contributes both to understand the contemporary urban political as influenced by consulting and to differentiate the debate on critique and resistance against it.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Anne Vogelpohl
    • 1
  1. 1.Department for GeographyUniversity of HamburgHamburgGermany

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