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Bristol’s inclusive growth strategy: Excavating the discourse of the One City Plan

Atkinson, Rob; Tallon, Andrew

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Over the last twenty years, particularly since the publication of the Barca report (2009) and Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) (2014) report, a new 'conventional wisdom'/ paradigm has emerged for local development - the place-based approach. This entails a commitment to inclusive growth and productivity-driven growth. However, two key issues remain: what does inclusive growth mean and how can it be reconciled with productivity-driven growth? This article provides a discourse analysis of one such attempt - Bristol's inclusive growth strategy and the associated One City Plan, a place-based approach. Our aim is to excavate and scrutinise the discourse(s) that have shaped the strategy to provide a better understanding of its origins and possible future development (i.e. its sustainability) and how it seeks to discursively reconcile these two key issues whilst taking into account the 'structural limitations' it faces. Finally we seek to briefly draw out the wider implications of this for the place-based approach.


Atkinson, R., & Tallon, A. (2023). Bristol’s inclusive growth strategy: Excavating the discourse of the One City Plan. Town Planning Review, 94(4), 435-454.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Oct 24, 2022
Online Publication Date Jan 23, 2023
Publication Date Jun 1, 2023
Deposit Date Jan 24, 2023
Publicly Available Date Jun 13, 2023
Journal Town Planning Review
Print ISSN 0041-0020
Electronic ISSN 1478-341X
Publisher Liverpool University Press
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 94
Issue 4
Pages 435-454
Keywords Bristol, One City Plan, inclusive growth, discourse analysis, strategic vision
Public URL
Publisher URL
Additional Information The article is based on research carried out as part of the Horizon 2020 project: Inequality, Urbanization and Territorial Cohesion: Developing the European Social Model of Economic Growth and Democratic Capacity (COHSMO). The project was funded by the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No. 727058. The views expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of the funding organisation or the COHSMO consortium.


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