Discourse and practices in shrinking regions

An analysis of the subjective relevance of shrinkage discourses using the example of the municipality of Altenburger Land

The project aims at answering the question of how shrinkage processes are negotiated in the inhabitants’ everyday life within the affected regions by focusing on the example of the German rural district Altenburger Land.

Between 1990 and 2010, the city of Meuselwitz has lost approximately a quarter of its inhabitants.

With neighbours moving away, firms closing their business, public transport being reduced and medical care becoming difficult, shrinkage negatively effects people’s everyday life. Also, shrinkage is a term that can function as a negative stigma for regions. The loss of a positive image by publishing decreasing population figures and disappearing potentials for development can further catalyze a negative trend. The project will focus on which precise effects these trends have on the inhabitants. In order to do this, interviews and group discussions will be conducted with politicians, experts and inhabitants as well as with members of the church.

The key goal revolves around gathering new insights into the everyday dimension of shrinkage. Is shrinkage a downward spiraling negative process and what effects do these processes have on the individual decisions of inhabitants?

Results/Publications

Meyer, Frank / Miggelbrink, Judith (Hrsg.) (2015): Kirchliche Strukturplanung in schrumpfenden ländlichen Räumen. Das Beispiel des Kirchenkreises Altenburger Land. forum IfL, H. 28
pdf

Meyer, Frank / Miggelbrink, Judith (2015): Subjektivität und Kausalität in der Migration(sforschung). Annäherungen an Rationalisierungen von Migrationsentscheidungen in schrumpfenden Regionen. In: Raumforschung und Raumordnung, 73 (2015) 1. p. 17-30 … More information

Meyer, Frank / Miggelbrink, Judith (2013): The subject and the periphery: about discourses, loopings and ascriptions. In: Fischer-Tahir, Andrea et al. (Hrsg.): Peripheralization: the making of spatial dependencies and social injustice. Wiesbaden: Springer, VS, p. 207-223

Meyer, Frank (2012): Analyzing the subjectivity of "crisis": local practices between circularity and discourse theory. In: Kapferer, Elisabeth et al. (Hrsg.): The logics of change: poverty, place, identity, and social transformation mechanisms. Newcastle upon Tyne: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, p. 269-295

Project information

Researcher/Research team

Judith Miggelbrink (project management), Frank Meyer

Cooperation

Leibniz-Institut für Regionalentwicklung und Strukturplanung, Erkner; Humboldt-Universität Berlin; Hochschule Mittweida

Duration of project

03/2013 – 09/2016

Project sponsorship

German Research Foundation

Further information

Judith Miggelbrink
Tel.: +49 341 600 55-109
j_miggelbrink(at)ifl-leipzig.de