Dr Paul Sullivan: How people are affected by the reputation of where they live
Paul and colleagues are researching how Bradford’s reputation impacts on its politics. In a recent study they conducted an extensive set of interviews with political stakeholders, students and staff at the University of Bradford. They analysed the interviews to understand the complex inter-relationships between place, politics and identity.
They found that a negative reputation can create double meanings for the inhabitants of that society; local reputation enhances a sense of identity by linking places to personalities but can reduce the districts positive identity; and everyday experiences sometimes acquire charged emotional symbolic significance which could encourage change in the political process.