Edge. Creation and valuation of novelty at the margins.

Cities are routinely eulogized as harbingers of progress and emancipation, as the locus of innovation and creativity. And, in fact, the historical record of cities in engendering artistic, scientific or societal creativity from the ancient Greece polis over Renaissance Florence, Modern Art Paris to New York’s ‘Warhol Economy’ is impressive. More recently, though, discords began to mingle with the harmonious choir praising the allegedly greatest invention of humanity. The fixation with the unique affordances of urban places, as the critique maintains, has systematically impoverished our understanding of creativity in the periphery. To rectify this urban bias, a veritable stream of research initiatives has been launched more recently to push the focus of scholarly debate on creativity from center to periphery, from the urban to the rural. While this challenge of the ontological privilege of the center appears overdue, Edge is not intended to simply shift the view-finder of academic inquiry from one static territorial category to another. Edge rather pursues three more ambitious aims.

First, Edge seeks to push beyond the prevailing perception of periphery as the non- and the beyond-center. The term periphery routinely amounts to hardly more than a residual category for deficient places suffering from a fundamental lack of those quintessential urban qualities that fuel innovation: Jacobs-externalities, Florida-amenities, and Glaeser-density. The first aim of Edge is to critically interrogate this narrow perception, and to move from a deficiency-fixated to an asset-based conceptualization of peripherality. Second, Edge aims at challenging the prevailing understanding of centrality and peripherality as adamant fate sealed by geography and history. Actors might deliberately choose a peripheral position as outsider to shield their creativity from the mainstream. Moreover, creative outsiders who transit between center and periphery might catalyze shifts in evaluative frames, and what  used to be disdained as periphery morphs into a center of a new creative movement. Third, Edge probes into the interrelations between generation and valuation of novelty, and elucidates the dynamic interdependencies between center and periphery: Although peripherality might benefit the inception of novelty, centrality is essential for the valuation and authentication of the value of the novelty.


Thursday, 21 November 2019

8:30    Registration
9:00   Welcome and Introduction
          Gernot Grabher (HCU Hamburg) and Oliver Ibert (IRS Erkner)

9:30 – 13:00 | Session 1
09:30   Amanda Kolson Hurley (Author and Journalist, Washington, DC)
            “Peripheral vision: utopian suburb-building in the United States”
10:15   Candace Jones (University of Edinburgh Business School)
            “Edinburgh: novelty and marginality at the center”

11:00   Coffee
11:30   Richard Shearmur (McGill University Montreal)
            “Innovation in the geographic periphery: optics and relationships”
12:15   Thilo Lang (Institute for Regional Research, IfL Leipzig)
            “Towards a hybrid conceptualization of innovation geographies: 
            knowledge sourcing of hidden champions in Germany”
13:00   Lunch
14:00 – 18:00 | Session II
14:00   Stoyan V. Sgourev (ESSEC Business School Paris)
            "Reversing tempering: when ideas from the core 
              are radicalized at the periphery"
14:45   Heike Mayer (University of Berne)
            “Slow innovation in Europe’s peripheral regions”
15:30   Coffee
16:00   Andy Pike (Newcastle University)
            “Mixing, mutating and innovating managerial, entrepreneurial and 
            financialized governance in peripheral cities”
16:45   Michaela Trippl (University of Vienna) and 
           Jakob Eder (Austrian Academy of Sciences)          
            Rethinking innovation in the periphery: asset-driven or challenge-driven?"
17:30   Ariane Berthoin Antal (Social Science Center Berlin, WZB) and 
            Julian Hamann (University of Hannover)
              Playgrounds and serious work in academia: an essay and research agenda

Friday, 22 November 2019
9:00 – 10:30 | Session III
9:00     Richard Pascale (Oxford University Saïd Business School)
            “Remedy of last resort: bringing discoveries of outliers into the mainstream"
 9:45    Gino Cattani (New York University Stern Business School) and 
            Simone Ferriani (Università di Bologna)
            “The legitimation journey of novelty“

10:30   Coffee
11:00   Chad Allan Goldberg (University of Wisconsin-Madison)
            “The creative agent on the margin of two cultures”
11:45   Felippe Massa (Loyola University New Orleans) and 
            Siobhán O’Mahoney (Stanford University)
            “Explaining the escalation of networked activism through 
            repertoire reconfiguration”
12:30   Lunch
13:30 -  16:30 | Session IV
13:30   Trevor Barnes (University of British Columbia Vancouver)
            “The geographical materiality of a good idea”
14:15   Simone Ferriani (Università di Bologna) and Gino Cattani 
            (New York University Stern Business School)
            “Overcoming the liability of novelty: the power of framing“

15:00   Coffee
15:30   David Stark (Columbia University New York)
            "Creation and valuation of novelty at the margins: reflections"

16:30   Farewell
Starts:  Nov 21, 2019 9:00 AM (CET)
Ends:  Nov 22, 2019 5:00 PM (CET)


Representation of the Federal State Hamburg in Berlin
Jägerstraße 1
Berlin, 10117