Transforming the geography of the welfare state through neoliberal spatial strategies: the case of Denmark

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The aim of this chapter is to explore the role of strategic spatial planning in promoting state spatial restructuring, rescaling and production of new state spaces in the context of global economic restructuring. This is done through a case study of strategic spatial planning in Denmark from 1990 to 2018. The chapter argues that state spatial restructuring in Denmark since the 1990s has evolved in three successive rounds of neoliberal spatial strategies. Each round of state restructuring is characterized by a further neoliberalization of strategic spatial planning and an increasingly fragmentation of state space, breaking effectively with the neatly organized compartmentalization of the welfare state’s geography. In this way, the chapter seeks to demonstrate how strategic spatial planning constitutes a helpful analytical lens for analysing contemporary transformations of state spatiality.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationHandbook on the Changing Geographies of the State : New Spaces of Geopolitics
EditorsSami Moisio, Natalie Koch, Andrew EG Jonas, Christopher Lizotte, Juho Luukkonen
Number of pages13
PublisherEdward Elgar Publishing
Publication date2020
ISBN (Print)978 1 78897 804 0
ISBN (Electronic)978 1 78897 805 7
Publication statusPublished - 2020


  • depoliticization
  • neoliberalization
  • soft space
  • spatial Keynesianism
  • state spatial restructuring
  • strategic spatial planning


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