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Teaching Staff, School of Business and Management Institut Teknologi Bandung - Indonesia
Human Capital Management
Competence-based Human Resource Management
Creative city and knowledge community: Their interplay in human development in Bandung, Indonesia
People are at the center of development. Their ideas, knowledge and creativity are the drivers of development transformation, plus they replace natural resources and market access as means to survive modern complex problems in this urbanizing world. As a result, more and more cities around the world take the “creative city-making” approach, despite the different definitions of it as proposed by scholars and development agencies. The research is focused in Bandung, Indonesia, as an illustration of an alternative development pathway. This is so as to challenge ideas of urban development that assume linearity in development transformation. Bandung currently has around 2.6 million inhabitants, with 70 percent of them being youth. In 2007, Bandung was appointed as the first creative city in Indonesia by the British Council. To date, Bandung city has seriously taken up the concept and consequently joined the UNICEF Creative City Network as a design city in 2015. Interestingly, Bandung is also a place where hundreds of communities, initiated by young people, actively organize periodic knowledge sharing events. The events allow practitioners and academicians to share their expertise in public lectures and affordable workshops, related to various urban challenges, such as waste management, public transport, health issues, urban settlement, and the need to express oneself as part of cultural identity construction. This flourishing phenomenon of Bandung’s knowledge communities and the use of the creative city concept will surely shape knowledge construction within the city. It will also facilitate people’s right to continuously re-make themselves by shaping the development of their city.
My study investigates the interplay between the creative city concept and knowledge communities within urban development in Bandung. In this research, I try to unravel the power-dynamics, motives, directions, and patterns of interaction among the knowledge communities and the creative city concept, especially in the constructions of day-to-day reality and the knowledge related to urban development in Bandung This is so as to avoid understanding urban development as an a-political phenomenon. Therefore, during my field research, I conducted interviews with different stakeholders in Bandung, participated in knowledge community activities, attended related events, compiled related government and institution reports, and also collected written interactions on social media. The preliminary findings reveal that there are four different but interrelated ideas about the creative city concept in Bandung: it functions as an economic driver; it is a city brand; it both constructs and disrupts social identity; it both limits and encourages forms of aesthetic expression; and it raises questions about the definition of creativity itself. Different knowledge communities work with and even against each idea. The research also finds that the term creative city serves as a temporary panacea for various urban problems in Bandung, even when different proponents of each interpretation challenge one another on their contributions to city development.