The significance and appeal of this book lies in the fact that it contains chapters which propose novel and innovative tools for analysis of the city. What is especially crucial in this publication is the highly transparent and comprehensive manner in which the authors have presented the ways by which they conducted their explorations of the metropolis. The very presence of such broad descriptions of research not only increases their credibility, but, in many places, also makes this volume a sort of manual delineating how to effectively carry out studies of the city that meet the demands of modernity.
Yet another valuable aspect of this book is that it allows the reader to familiarize him or herself with inquiries – often very detailed and local studies – which it would otherwise be very difficult to access. Hence this volume becomes a forum where the most notable scholars of urban sociology meet those who are only just starting their academic careers, and where representatives of Western sociology meet those from beyond the center. Quite crucial is that the editors have managed to create such a space where these different – ideological, theoretical as well as generational – perspectives on urban research can be confronted with one another in a creative, scholarly dialogue.
Professor Marek Krajewski, Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań
Not only the extensive range of topics covered, but, above all, the intellectual level of the chapters – as well as the multinational representation of the authors – render this a volume which will be received with great interest and thoughtful consideration by broad, international circles of readers. These will principally include sociologists, especially those studying urban issues, but also representatives of local governments. Generally speaking, this will draw persons interested in urban politics broadly understood as well as those interested in the social issues of contemporary cities and their prospects for development.
This book introduces the reader to the multicolored mosaic of urban problems. It sheds light on them through the prism of various theoretical concepts and methodological approaches. Moreover, it applies the latest technologies for gathering and processing information about the cultural patterns of urban life as well as the structural identities of cities. This volume takes the reader on an intellectual journey across Europe and the United States, from Yekaterinburg to Porto, from Stockholm to Milan, to Chicago, and to other cities.
Professor Wojciech Świątkiewicz, University of Silesia in Katowice.