Profile of Mr Richard Joseph University of Reading

Richard Joseph

General research interests

Local and regional economic development and policy; European and international spatial planning, and territorial development and governance

PhD/Postdoctoral Research Title

Conceptualizing ‘Change’ in the Portuguese Footwear Industry: Regional Voices and Cognitive Spaces of Agency

PhD Abstract

Expanding national services sectors and global competition aggravate current and perceived future market pressures on traditional manufacturing industries. These perceptions of change have provoked a growing intensification of geo-political discourses on technological innovation and ‘learning’, and calls for competency in design among other professional skills. However, these political discourses on innovation and learning have paralleled public concerns with the apparent ‘growth pains’ from factory closures and subsequent increases in unemployment, and its debilitating social and economic implications for local and regional development. In this respect the following investigation sets out to conceptualize change through the complementary and differing perceptions of industry and regional actors’ experiences or narratives, linking these perceptions to their structure-determined spheres of agent-environment interactivity. It aims to determine whether agents’ differing perceptions of industry transformation can have a role in the legitimization of their interests in, and in sustaining their organizational influence over the process of industry-regional transformation. It argues that industry and regional agent perceptions are among the cognitive aspects of agent environment interactivity that permeate agency. It stresses agents’ ability to reason and manipulate their work environments to preserve their self-regulating interests in, and task representative influence over the multi-jurisdictional space of industry-regional transformation. The contributions of this investigation suggest that agents’ varied perceptions of industry and regional change inform or compete for influence over the redirection of regional, industry and business strategies. This claim offers a greater appreciation for the reflexive and complex institutional dimensions of industry planning and development, and the political responsibility to socially just forms of regional development. It positions the outcomes of this investigation at the nexus of intensifying geo-political discourses on the efficiency and equity of territorial development in Europe.

Latest deposited documents

Harmonisation and local knowledge: EU enlargement and approaches to regional development image
Harmonisation and local knowledge: EU enlargement and approaches to regional development (January 2007)

Despite various pressures for the increasing harmonisation of approaches to regional development and spatial planning throughout the EU, the wide...

Juridical Spaces of Change: A Multiple Dimensional Scaling Approach to Institutional Diversity and Industrial Development image
Juridical Spaces of Change: A Multiple Dimensional Scaling Approach to Institutional Diversity and Industrial Development (December 2006)

Current and perceived future market pressures on traditional manufacturing industries have provoked a growing intensification of geo-political...

Harmonisation and local knowledge: EU enlargement and approaches to regional development image
Harmonisation and local knowledge: EU enlargement and approaches to regional development (November 2006)

Despite various pressures for the increasing harmonisation of approaches to regional development and spatial planning throughout the EU, the wide...

EUROPEANIZATION OF CENTRAL AND EASTERN EUROPEAN COUNTRIES SPATIAL PLANNING SYSTEMS: DIFFERENT DRIVING FORCES. TRENDS TOWARDS DIVERGENCE OR UNIFORMITY? image
EUROPEANIZATION OF CENTRAL AND EASTERN EUROPEAN COUNTRIES SPATIAL PLANNING SYSTEMS: DIFFERENT DRIVING FORCES. TRENDS TOWARDS DIVERGENCE OR UNIFORMITY? (December 2006)

On May the 1st 2005, the fifth European Union Enlargement process ended up with a formal realization. The event represent a complex phenomena...

Sustainable Development at the Regional Level: The Case Porto Metropolitan Area image
Sustainable Development at the Regional Level: The Case Porto Metropolitan Area (November 2006)

The main objective of this paper is to present the research methodology of a PhD thesis presently being started at
Instituto Superior Técnico...