Skip to main content

New dissertation on Place Branding


On 16 December, Eva-Maria Jernsand (School of Business, Economics and Law) defended her thesis Inclusive place branding – what it is and how to progress towards it. Eva-Maria Jernstrand has collaborated with doctoral student Helena Kraff, HDK, in this project about marketplaces.

Eva-Maria Jernsand and Helena Kraff wrote their master thesis together at the Master's programme Business & Design, using design to develop a place, in that case Bollebygd. Both Eva-Maria and Helena later became doctoral students within Mistra Urban Futures and have done their empirical work in Kisumu, Kenya. Eva-Maria at School of Business, Economics and Law, Centre for Touris and Helena is a doctoral student at HDK.

Eva-Maria’s project is about how place branding and participatory design can be used to create participation in the branding process for site and destination marketing of Kisumu, Kenya.

Title of the thesis is “Inclusive place branding - what it is and how to progress towards it”. It is about working with local markets in an inclusive manner. More players, not least citizens should participate actively in the place branding process for it to be sustainable, otherwise there is a risk that the market is used as a political tool for the realization of individual and group interests. Eva-Maria explains: “I present five typologies that characterize an inclusive place branding process: an evolutionary process, participation, transformation, diversity and democracy. Then I give an example by describing and reflecting on my participation in a trans-disciplinary and action-oriented project for tourism development in the fishing community Dunga by Lake Victoria in Kenya. I want the thesis to invite to learning and reflection between regions in different ways with participation in the public sphere. In addition to marketing the thesis includes mainly design but also, for example, public administration, development studies and educational science.”

Opponent at public defense was Associate Professor Anette Therkelsen, Institut for Kultur og Globale Studies, Aalborg University, Denmark, and the examining committee was Associate Professor Frank Lindberg, North University, Bodö, Norway, Professor Henrietta Palmer, Department of Architecture, Chalmers University of Technology, Gothenburg and Professor Øystein Jensen, Norwegian hotellhøgskole, Samfunnsvitenskapelige faculty, University of Stavanger, Norway. Chairman at the defense was Professor Lena Mossberg, Department of Business Administration, School of Business, Economics and Law and supervisor of Eva-Maria Jernsand.