The Perception of the City as a Growth Machine and Space of Flows


  • AnaRusta


Two of the main features of the city over the last 50 years include intense urbanization and large scale growth. These two phenomena have produced new social, political and economical dynamics that have radicalized our understanding of the city. Many disciplines, among which urban sociology, are facing a crisis of old paradigms to explain these innovations. Consequently, contemporary urban sociology has articulated two new paradigms that try to explain and analyze the new processes of global urbanization. In the view of new models of urban growth, under intense globalization process, these phenomena are completely renovating the perception of the city under the models of a growth machine and the space of flows. These two views attempt to explain and understand the dynamic growth and changes in contemporary cities. In this essay we will put expose a critical analysis of the city as a growth machine and space of flows of the most important authors that unfold a latest development of the city in contemporary conditions. The main authors whose work will be addressed here are Harvey Molotch and Manuel Castells. Molotch reveals a new perception of the city as a growth machine that is based on the terms of strong economic urban development, while Castells introduces the notion of "network city" and "space of flows" for a new social structure to explain the complexity of connection within and between the cities (global cities). Under the new conditions, the perception of the city is understood as the space of flows that create global networks and new forms of interaction.

DOI: 10.5901/mjss.2017.v8n1p453


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How to Cite

Rusta, A. (2017). The Perception of the City as a Growth Machine and Space of Flows. Mediterranean Journal of Social Sciences, 8(1), 453. Retrieved from