Den udsatte by: Et systemteoretisk blik på den udsatte bys politik

Carl Philip Zacho Kuipers

Student thesis: Master thesis


In 2012 the municipality of Copenhagen writes an overall policy regarding the city's exposed urban areas. It is written in collaboration between all city administrations and it identifies six substantial urban areas in Copenhagen, which are to be categorized as socially and physically exposed. The policy, which also applies today, uses nine goals to specify the desired development in the disadvantaged urban areas. The goals ask for positive development in employment, health, security, cultural consumption, education etc. In other words a wide range of options is constructed in order to identify exposed areas in the city of Copenhagen. This thesis examines how the municipality of Copenhagen construct its observation of exposed areas in the city and how this construction creates administrative opportunities. By using Niklas Luhmann's theory of social systems and observation, the thesis show how the policy forms a specific logic based on social and spatial uniformity as a guideline for the development of exposed areas. The thesis is divided in two analyses. The first one observes how the notion of the exposed urban areas emerges from the policy. In the second one it comes to show that the orientation towards social uniformity stands in a paradoxical relationship to the diversity of the city, which is articulated as a special value in the communication. This gives rise to internal friction in the policy. On the basis of Luhmann's systems theory the thesis show how the policy construct its observation on the exposed areas in Copenhagen. This creates a very extensive policy, which incorporates a great deal of the city. From this a dichotomy arises from the communication between uniformity and diversity.

EducationsMSocSc in Political Communication and Managment, (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
Publication date2014
Number of pages56