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Dr. Boris Vormann


Lansstraße 5-9
14195 Berlin

Blind Spots of Globalization, Neoliberalization Processes in North American Port Cities

Dissertation in Politics

Mentoring team:
First supervisor: Prof. Margit Mayer
Second supervisor: Prof. Winfried Fluck
Third supervisor: Prof. Christian Lammert

This dissertation explores neoliberalization processes and their impacts on socio-spatial dynamics in North American port cities since the mid-1970s. In the broader context of economic restructuring, enormous increases in international trade, and changes in urban governance, port cities such as New York City, Los Angeles, Vancouver, and Montréal experienced profound processes of transformation. The focus of this analysis lies on the ways in which this transition from Fordism materialized in the context of these individual case studies. The analysis finds that, rather than resolving the pathologies, risks and liabilities of the industrial age, the costs of the new economic geography have simply been relocated. Poverty, pollution and threats to security have been externalized and relegated away from the urban waterfront to other places within and outside the port city. In the new context of market fundamentalism, a small number of actors have been able to externalize their costs and impose them on wide sections of society, particularly on its lower strata.

Dahlem Research School
Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft