The University of Southampton
University of Southampton Institutional Repository

Globalising care? Town twinning in Britain since 1945

Clarke, Nick (2011) Globalising care? Town twinning in Britain since 1945 Geoforum, 42, (1), pp. 115-125. (doi:10.1016/j.geoforum.2010.10.006).

Record type: Article


Town twinning describes the establishment and practice, by various groups and to various ends, of relatively formal and long-term relationships between settlements usually located in different nation-states. Twin towns are sometimes called sister cities. This paper draws on a study of town twinning that focused on the involvement of British localities since the end of the Second World War and analysed data collected by the Local Government Association (for England and Wales), materials archived in the National Archives at Kew, London and various local record offices, and transcripts of interviews with representatives of relevant local, national, and international organisations. The paper makes three main contributions. Firstly, it provides a brief history of town twinning involving British localities. Secondly, it develops from this historical narrative an original conceptualisation of town twinning, arguing that it should be approached less as a coherent movement and more as a device, a repertoire, and a model. Thirdly, it argues that town twinning has often been used as a device for extending care across space – and that much can be learned from its history for contemporary geographies of care. Town twinning participants have approached the problem of care-at-a-distance as both an ontological problem and a practical problem. Some have focused more than others on the role of distanciated causal relationships in the generation of needs in distant places. Some are currently encountering another problem as they attempt to globalise care: the problem of care-in-a-hurry.

PDF Globalising_care_FAVPPR.pdf - Accepted Manuscript
Download (356kB)

More information

Published date: January 2011


Local EPrints ID: 169119
ISSN: 0016-7185
PURE UUID: 24f03169-fac0-4f94-8a13-083f014dc079

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 10 Dec 2010 09:27
Last modified: 18 Jul 2017 12:19

Export record



Author: Nick Clarke

University divisions

Download statistics

Downloads from ePrints over the past year. Other digital versions may also be available to download e.g. from the publisher's website.

View more statistics

Atom RSS 1.0 RSS 2.0

Contact ePrints Soton:

ePrints Soton supports OAI 2.0 with a base URL of

This repository has been built using EPrints software, developed at the University of Southampton, but available to everyone to use.

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue without changing your settings, we will assume that you are happy to receive cookies on the University of Southampton website.