The Interplay Between Urban Policies and Grassroots City Brand Co-creation and Co-destruction During the Refugee Crisis: Insights From the City Brand Munich (Germany)

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Up till now, only few researchers have looked at the dynamics that develop when citizens' collective actions co-create and eventually co-destruct a city brand. This research paper analyzes the interplay between urban policies and grassroots city brand development during the refugee crisis that had its peak in autumn 2015 in Germany. We chose the city of Munich (Germany) as the case, because the city has managed to communicate itself as an open and tolerant place. However currently, this city has increasingly been jeopardized by the refugee crisis and thus constitutes an extreme case illustrating city brand co-creation and potential co-destruction dynamics. Based on our qualitative research, we derive three propositions about city brand co-creation and co-destruction which aim to stimulate future research. In doing so, this research is a highly relevant example for cities in crisis, where collective action is supporting as well as challenging the co-created meaning of a place (brand).
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)53-60
Number of pages8
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2018

Bibliographical note

Published online: 24. July 2017


  • Munich
  • City branding
  • Brand co-creation
  • Brand co-destruction
  • Refugee crisis

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