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dc.contributor.advisorGnoth, Juergen
dc.contributor.advisorThyne , Maree
dc.contributor.authorSantana, Adriana Campelo
dc.identifier.citationSantana, A. C. (2011). Re-conceptualising Sense of Place: Implications for place branding (Thesis, Doctor of Philosophy). University of Otago. Retrieved from
dc.description.abstractThis thesis is concerned with understanding what constitutes a sense of place and how such an understanding can help in the development of a place brand. Branding theory and techniques have been applied to places in order to promote economic development and to enhance the cultural differentiation of places. The development of a brand for places requires not just an understanding of the elements that create a communal sense of place, but also an understanding of how the place is part of the community it represents. What constitutes a sense of place can help in the development of a place brand. In this endeavour, the research problem is to understand what constructs determine a sense of place. In order to achieve the aims of this research, an investigation was conducted on the Chatham Islands of New Zealand, an archipelago with ten islands with an area of 966 km2 and a population of 609 inhabitants, located 800 km east of New Zealand. In this relatively isolated community that has a distinct cultural history, interactions with the environment are pronounced and relationships between people are critical. The thesis adopts a qualitative philosophical position, positioning research paradigms as interpretivist, postmodernist and constructivist. Accepting the existence of multiple realities, the ontology of this study is relativist leading to a transactional and subjectivist epistemology. The epistemology that guided the entire journey is based on the belief that a collaborative approach is necessary to create knowledge, via a phenomenological hermeneutic methodology. Multi-sited ethnography (Marcus 1995) through participant observation, phenomenological interviews, and videography was used as a strategy for inquiry. The constructs of time, ancestry, landscape, and community, were revealed to be determinants for the Chatham Islanders’ sense of place and they recognised them as elements of major significance in their lifestyle, and in their personal and communal identity. These constructs stand for a set of meanings that influence the habitus, the ways of doing things on the islands, and the significance of doing things in particular ways. In addition, the findings and discussion demonstrated how these constructs bestow meanings on the symbolic representations of the community, which are also reinforced through the sensory perceptions of the place. This thesis suggests a creational place branding approach that adopts a co-creation strategy to identify the constructs that determine the sense of place. A sense of place model is presented as a guide to investigate the set of meanings within each of these four constructs (time, ancestry, landscape, and community), and their importance in other places. The recognition and representation of these constructs are vitally important to brand imagery and brand communication. Equally important, is an understanding of how these constructs should be represented in order to properly express and preserve their meanings. Place imagery encompasses symbolic representations and sensory perceptions of the place. Therefore, this study develops and presents imagery representation criteria to provide procedures to enhance the ethos of the place in portraying a place brand. The creational ethically-driven place branding approach proposed in this thesis embraces the co-creation and recognises the cultural dependency of brand meanings. It requires that the ethos of the place and the people of the place should be positioned at the core of the brand to establish ownership, achieve authenticity and promote brand sustainability.
dc.publisherUniversity of Otago
dc.rightsAll items in OUR Archive are provided for private study and research purposes and are protected by copyright with all rights reserved unless otherwise indicated.
dc.subjectsense of place
dc.titleRe-conceptualising Sense of Place: Implications for place branding
dc.typeThesis of Philosophy of Otago Theses
otago.openaccessAbstract Only
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