Where does work actually take place?

For many years I have been studying where jobs locate in cities. I have also tried to understand where innovation occurs. Both of these strands of research have led me to question whether it is in fact possible to ‘locate’ economic processes, given that they often rely on extended spatial networks and that the individuals involved in these processes often travel – at different scales (local to international) and with different temporalities (during the working day, to permanent migration).

This has given rise to a series of papers that conceptualize this niggling question, propose empirical analyses, and propose methods to study the ‘location of work’ in metropolitan areas (given that it cannot be located….). If this sounds confusing, read on!.

Shearmur, R., Ananian, P., Lachapelle, U., Parra-Lockurst, M., Scherrer-Paulhiac, F. et Tremblay, D-G, and Wycliffe-Jones, A., 2021, Towards a post-Covid geography of economic activity : using probability spaces to decipher Montreal’s changing workscapes, Urban Studies, doi.org/10.1177/00420980211022895

Shearmur, R., Parra-Lockurst, M. and Wycliffe-Jones, A., 2021, The exaggerated report of offices’ demise: The strength of real workplace ties. in Doucet, B., Filion, P. and van Melik, R. (eds) Global Reflections on COVID-19 Urban Inequalities: Policy and Planning, Bristol: Policy Press

Pajevic, F. and R.Shearmur, 2021, Where are the knowledge workers? The case of Silicon valley North in Ontario, Canada, in Mariotti, I., Di Vita, S. and Akhavan, M. (eds) New Workplaces – Location Patterns, Urban effects and Development Trajectories, Cham: Springer, 233-250

Shearmur, R, 2020, L’avenir du centre-ville de Montréal. Impact immédiat de la COVID et perspectives post-COVID, working paper

Shearmur, R., 2020, Conceptualizing and measuring the location of work: work location as a probability space, Urban Studies, doi.org/10.1177/0042098020912124

Putri, D, and R.Shearmur, 2020, Workplace mobility in Canadian urban agglomerations, 1996 to 2016: Have workers really flown the coop? The Canadian Geographer, doi.org/10.1111/cag.12622

Stevens, L. and R.Shearmur, 2020, The End of Location Theory? Some Implications of Micro-work, Work trajectories and Gig-Work for Conceptualizing the Urban Space Economy, Geoforum, 111, p155-164

Shearmur, R., 2018, The Millennial Urban Space-Economy: Dissolving Workplaces and the De-localization of Economic Value-Creation, in Moos,M., D.Pfeiffer and T.Vinodrai (eds) Millennial City, London: Routledge, 65-80

Pajevic, F. and R.Shearmur, 2017, Catch Me if You Can: Big Data and Workplace Mobility, Journal of Urban Technology , DOI: 10.1080/10630732.2017.1334855

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