CfP Conceptualizing and decoding short-term rentals in times of digital capitalism

Call for Papers: RGS-IBG Annual International Conference, Cardiff (UK), 28-31 August 2018

Short-term rentals (STR) spark media attention, public debate and diverse reactions from city governments in response to what is often labelled as sharing economy, disruptive business model or new urban tourism. These categorizations hardly capture the dynamic phenomenon that is driven by and responds to urban tourists and other transient visitors and affects and transgresses different urban material and social sub-systems: housing market, public and private space and infrastructure. And while there is a pervasive sense that STR challenge everyday urban realities, urban planning and urban policies, broader theoretical explanations are still scarce.

This session seeks to find new conceptualizations that link STR with broader processes of urban transformation and restructuring. In particular, we are interested in theoretical as well as empirical papers that combine micro- and macro-level perspectives and provide a critical analysis of different dimensions of STR (e.g. policy agendas, gentrification, urban infrastructure, financialization) in different urban settings.

We invite contributions that discuss and address (although not limited to) the following broader topics:

  • Uncovering STR and linking it to broader trends in urban political economy
  • Exploring the driving actors (actor relations, actor coalitions) behind STR in European cities
  • Research on urban contestations in relation to STR
  • Single case and comparative studies that tackle the impact of STR on local housing markets of European cities and beyond
  • Impact on urban infrastructure and public spaces
  • Commodification of housing
  • Interlacing with other forms of digital capitalism (wework etc.)

Please send abstracts of no more than 250 words, along with a title, author(s), affiliation and contact details, both to Angela Hof (angela.hof@sbg.ac.at) and Christian Smigiel (christian.smigiel@sbg.ac.at) by Friday 9th February 2018.

The CfP can be found here.
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