Logistics City-Regions in Transition. New Spatial Imaginary?
Over the last few years, the goods distribution system in European cities has suffered a strong fragmentation. City-regions are substituting cities in the global economic and political setting and their roles in the world economy related to logistics. Understanding the policy and governance dimension of logistics and freight distribution about land uses and circulation modes is crucial in exploring how logistics are discursively framed. The project – in the framework of a research on Operational Geographies (https://www.operationalgeographies.polimi.it/en/operational-geographies-spatial-strategies-dynamic-maps-of-regional-urbanization-a-basic-research-project/) analyses how contested and contradictory, such issues are.
Moved by these concerns, the project explores the regionalisation processes ongoing in two Southern European city-regions: Verona (Italy) and Zaragoza (Spain). It focuses mainly on the influence of the dynamics of logistics, addressing three main questions: 1) How does logistics produce new city-region geographies beyond node-network-style transportation studies? 2) How are logistics impacting city-regions development dynamics and their sustainability and green transition? 3) After the COVID-19 pandemic and the Russian invasion of Ukraine, how are the logistics regions planning their future and preparing to face unexpected crises? The research develops qualitative analyses concerning the spatial trajectories of those areas that have been interested in new trends in global supply chain and city-region freight distribution, trying to understand the new spatial imaginary mobilised by private logistics operators and public actors upon freight villages, logistics issues and ecological transition.
I am deeply honoured that the Regional Studies Association will support this project. Receiving the Membership Research Grant Scheme is an excellent opportunity to strengthen my research and focus on a selected topic. Thanks to the grant, I hope to address a specific gap in understanding and conceptualising city-regional logistics.
Principal Investigator: Simonetta Armondi
Simonetta Armondi is an Associate Professor in Economic and Political Geography at Politecnico di Milano, Department of Architecture and Urban Studies (DAStU). Her research interests focus on 1) productive territories and spatial justice, 2) Technical lands and city-region policies, 3) Political ecology . She is currently the scientific coordinator of the RIBA Research Project (funded by the DAStU): Operational Geographies in Northern Italy (2021-2023
www.operationalgeographies.polimi.it) and co-director of the research: 2024 Annual Report “The Cities and Territories of the National Recovery and Resilience Plan (NRRP). Actors, processes, policies”, Urban@it, National Centre for Urban Policies Studies. Since 2017 she has been on the Journal of Urban Technology editorial board.