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    The Ambiguities of ‘Sustainable’ Berlin

    Kalandides, Ares ORCID logoORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-3312-8276 and Grésillon, Boris (2021) The Ambiguities of ‘Sustainable’ Berlin. Sustainability, 13 (4). su13041666-su13041666. ISSN 2071-1050

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    City marketing has a strong tradition in Berlin, with two organizations, Berlin Partner and Visit Berlin, responsible for designing and implementing relevant strategies. Sustainability has been on and off the city marketing agenda, almost exclusively in its environmental dimension. In this article, we examine the current representations of Berlin as a “sustainable city” in the official city marketing strategies. We look at how sustainability is used and instrumentalized to create a specific city profile and also to attract particular target groups in tourism. We propose an analysis of sustainable planning in Berlin since reunification to show how it has moved into different directions over time and how this has (or has not) been followed by city marketing. In this endeavor, we move between the existing, and as we argue deeper and more sophisticated, environmental planning of the city on one hand, and the reductions and simplifications of city marketing representations on the other. Finally, we argue that there are inherent contradictions in marketing a sustainable city, where both in terms of tourism and economic development, the concept of growth seems to be reaching environmental limits.

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