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of governance, and when there is a natural connection between the ‘upgraded’ narrative of the place branding strategy, and existing narratives and values. Place branding therefore has to be quite sensitive to existing narratives and their position in governance, or, in other words, to power/knowledge configurations in governance. New narratives have to fit old ones, build on them cautiously, by referring to other features of place, history, or culture, which are not explicitly celebrated yet, but recognizable in the community and not entirely dissonant with images outside consumers and visitors might have. For prosperous communities, negative or weak images of a community can be changed through large-scale advertising, but viability over the long run is much higher when place brand, product brand, and place identity are consistent and branding is more a matter of linking, promoting, and developing than of inventing an identity from scratch. • British Columbia salmon and Alberta beef are strong brands. In the case of salmon, there is a stronger association with the physical place and environmental surroundings, with streams and attractive landscapes. Landscape and product brand can easily reinforce one another. and do so with little advertising. For Alberta beef, the cattle can be anywhere, and current production methods do not make it easy to attract tourists or create a strong place brand. If a community wants to extend the brand to bring in outsiders, what might work is to take a branding detour, from beef to cuisine, from cuisine to place, and use advertising to reinforce these links, drawing tourists to the more attractive parts of prairies and foothills, rather than beef farms and meatworks. This can then form an umbrella toward which certain locales can orient themselves when strategizing — perhaps smaller towns boasting typical prairie landscapes, with an interest in agriculture, food, tourism, and ranch-culture. • A branding strategy can also be a planning and design strategy. If a community chooses to embark on place branding as a core of their development strategy, we would recommend a combination with some form of spatial planning and design, focusing on preserving heritage, enhancing spatial quality, and connecting assets and infrastructure to make it easier to experience the qualities of the place. Place branding can sell the products of the place, but also the place itself. Beyond tourism, this can include attracting residents of certain categories, who might appreciate a living environment with character and identity. Spatial planning can ensure that branding strategies are

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Boom and Bust: a guide

Profile for University of Alberta Extension

Boom & Bust: A Guide, Managing Ups and Downs in Communities  

Boom and Bust: A Guide is the result of a collective effort at the University of Alberta to better understand the dramatic ups and downs whi...

Boom & Bust: A Guide, Managing Ups and Downs in Communities  

Boom and Bust: A Guide is the result of a collective effort at the University of Alberta to better understand the dramatic ups and downs whi...

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