The University of Southampton
University of Southampton Institutional Repository

UK high streets during global economic crisis

UK high streets during global economic crisis
UK high streets during global economic crisis
The 2008-09 global economic crisis has impacted UK high streets and town centres in complex and little understood ways. In addition, the vitality of UK high streets has been differentially impacted by three other forces and has become an increasing focus of government and public anxiety: These forces include: (i) the progressive rise of online shopping, (ii) the complex consequences of the implementation of a ‘town centre first’ policy in retail development and (iii) the rise of often underestimated influence of convenience culture.

This research investigates the response of UK high streets to these drivers of change, and seeks to make three main contributions. First, to provide new descriptive evidence on the differential performance of UK retail centres during and since the economic crisis. Although some of these findings parallel those suggested by specialist commercial research companies they also significantly extend available knowledge. In particular, they depict the discrepancy in the response of independent and multiple retailers to the economic and competitive shocks. Second, to identify the key drivers of town centre performance, by employing the multivariate analysis of that issue at both cross-regional and intra-urban levels. The cross-regional analysis derives seven factors associated with retail centre enhanced resilience or fragility to the economic crisis; the intra-urban analysis validates and reinforces the results of the cross-regional analysis and provides further insights into the dynamics of UK town centres performance in the post-crisis decade. Third, to conceptualise the nature of UK retail centres’ complex adjustment to the shock of economic crisis and other forces of change, by exploring alternative interpretations of the resilience of economic systems. In particular, we use the concept of adaptive resilience to understand the dynamic process through which UK high streets have gradually and constantly evolved. We suggest a conceptual framework which links the notions of adaptive capacity and adaptive resilience and indicates how a position of a centre in adaptive cycle and the role of various actors are important to performance of that centre.

At a time when the economic health of high streets has generated a large amount of research, the findings of this study have the potential to contribute to the policy agenda and set a benchmark against which future research can be positioned and interpreted.
Dolega, Leszek
ae0aa1fb-9a14-471b-bae7-6c5245f4a0fd
Dolega, Leszek
ae0aa1fb-9a14-471b-bae7-6c5245f4a0fd
Wrigley, Neil
e8e2986a-fbf0-4b27-9eef-1b5e6a137805

(2012) UK high streets during global economic crisis. University of Southampton, Geography and Environment, Doctoral Thesis, 322pp.

Record type: Thesis (Doctoral)

Abstract

The 2008-09 global economic crisis has impacted UK high streets and town centres in complex and little understood ways. In addition, the vitality of UK high streets has been differentially impacted by three other forces and has become an increasing focus of government and public anxiety: These forces include: (i) the progressive rise of online shopping, (ii) the complex consequences of the implementation of a ‘town centre first’ policy in retail development and (iii) the rise of often underestimated influence of convenience culture.

This research investigates the response of UK high streets to these drivers of change, and seeks to make three main contributions. First, to provide new descriptive evidence on the differential performance of UK retail centres during and since the economic crisis. Although some of these findings parallel those suggested by specialist commercial research companies they also significantly extend available knowledge. In particular, they depict the discrepancy in the response of independent and multiple retailers to the economic and competitive shocks. Second, to identify the key drivers of town centre performance, by employing the multivariate analysis of that issue at both cross-regional and intra-urban levels. The cross-regional analysis derives seven factors associated with retail centre enhanced resilience or fragility to the economic crisis; the intra-urban analysis validates and reinforces the results of the cross-regional analysis and provides further insights into the dynamics of UK town centres performance in the post-crisis decade. Third, to conceptualise the nature of UK retail centres’ complex adjustment to the shock of economic crisis and other forces of change, by exploring alternative interpretations of the resilience of economic systems. In particular, we use the concept of adaptive resilience to understand the dynamic process through which UK high streets have gradually and constantly evolved. We suggest a conceptual framework which links the notions of adaptive capacity and adaptive resilience and indicates how a position of a centre in adaptive cycle and the role of various actors are important to performance of that centre.

At a time when the economic health of high streets has generated a large amount of research, the findings of this study have the potential to contribute to the policy agenda and set a benchmark against which future research can be positioned and interpreted.

PDF
Dolega Thesis FINAL.pdf - Other
Download (5MB)

More information

Published date: December 2012
Organisations: University of Southampton

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 368179
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/368179
PURE UUID: 5c2c8df0-a9ef-4729-885b-8c66817a3525
ORCID for Neil Wrigley: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-3967-5668

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 24 Oct 2014 11:29
Last modified: 06 Jun 2018 13:13

Export record

Contributors

Author: Leszek Dolega
Thesis advisor: Neil Wrigley ORCID iD

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.ac.uk

ePrints Soton supports OAI 2.0 with a base URL of http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/cgi/oai2

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.

×