Cities have long been recognized as key sites for fostering new communication practices. However, as contemporary cities experience major changes, how do diverse inhabitants encounter each other? How do cities remember?  What is the role of the built environment in fostering sites for public communication in a digital era? Communicative Cities and Urban Space offers a critical analysis of contemporary changes in the relation between urban space and communication.

This volume seeks to understand the situatedness of contemporary communication practices in diverse contexts of urban life, and to explore digitized urban space as a historically specific communicative environment. The essays in this book collectively propose that the concept of the ‘communicative city’ is a productive frame for rethinking the above questions in the context of 21st-century ‘media cities’. They challenge us to reconsider qualities such as openness, autonomy and diversity in contemporary urban communication practices, and to identify factors that might expand or constrict communicative possibilities.

Students and scholars of communication studies and urban studies would benefit from this book.

chapter 1|8 pages


Spaces of communication
ByScott McQuire, Sun Wei

part 1|51 pages

Rethinking mediated urban space as communicative space

chapter 2|17 pages

Searching for the communicative city

BySusan J. Drucker, Gary Gumpert

chapter 3|17 pages

Architecture, media and spaces of urban communication

ByScott McQuire

chapter 4|15 pages


Flows, thresholds and difference in the study of mediated cities
ByZlatan Krajina

part 2|67 pages

Places, communication and placemaking

chapter 5|13 pages

Embodied publicness

Urban life in the age of mobile networks
BySun Wei

chapter 6|17 pages

The digitization of children’s public play spaces

ByBjørn Nansen, Thomas Apperley

chapter 7|15 pages

Decorating and imagining the new city with public art

A study on the sculptures and installations in Suzhou Industrial Park
ByChen Lin, Lu Jieqing

chapter 8|20 pages

SmArt city – turbulent city

Artistic engagements with urban ecologies in Delhi
ByChristiane Brosius

part 3|48 pages

Urban screens and new forms of public participation

chapter 9|16 pages

Urban renewal through media infrastructure

A case study of large screen development in Dandenong, Melbourne
ByStephanie Hannon

chapter 10|16 pages

Capturing ambient participation

Indian Independence Day at Federation Square
ByDanielle Wyatt, Nikos Papastergiadis, Millicent Weber

chapter 11|14 pages

Ambient participation, placemaking and urban screens

ByAudrey Yue

part 4|60 pages

Urban infrastructure and the communicative city

chapter 12|12 pages

Trams as urban media

Public transportation and the construction of Shanghai’s “circulation civilization” in the early twentieth century
ByZhang Yuchen

chapter 13|19 pages

Spectacular cities and mobile subjects

International students and Melbourne
ByAlex Lambert, Jasmin Pfefferkorn

chapter 14|12 pages

Drone media in the perspective of urban communication

A digitalized seeing method
ByZhou Haiyan

chapter 15|15 pages

Spatial practices and asymmetric alignment of temporalities

How “Shanghai Fabu” WeChat account transforms government communication in Shanghai
ByPan Ji