Place Marketing and Branding


Erasmus UPT is one of the few institutes with a strong academic background and expertise in place marketing and branding. Especially the marketing and branding of cities has gained popularity among urban policy-makers in the recent years. Unfortunately, a city brand is hard to measure, control, and manage, since it is based on the perceptions of the different customer groups. Consequently, this creates a big challenge for city brand managers because different associations have to be communicated to fit the customers’ expectations, making city branding a very complex practice. In the last decade we did not only educate future place brand managers, but we have also researched numerous place brands and place branding cases. We developed strategies for implementing place marketing and branding strategies, as well as measured success and failure of such strategies. Our practitioners’ case studies as well as our scientific publications had a great impact in the practitioners and academic world.  

Examples of projects

  • Stadshavens, from brand to market (2014-2015). Mixed methods study, including a large-scale survey research and GIS analysis, on the perception and development potential of the Stadshavens district of the City of Rotterdam. Commissioned by the City of Rotterdam.
  • Feasibility Study and Activity Plan: Branding of the Fehnarmbelt Region (2013-2014). Qualitative comparative study on cross-border region branding strategies, commissioned by Fonden Femern Belt Development (FDB) through the INTERREG program.
  • Innovative Urban Development Strategies for Sustainable Competitiveness (2012-2014). International comparative study with in-depth case studies of strategies in various cities. In partnership with Euricur, PwC, IHS and the City of Rotterdam.
  • Tourist satisfaction and expenditure in the Netherlands (2012-2013). A quantitative study on the satisfaction and expenditure of Dutch domestic tourists, and the role of the VVV as tourism management organization. Conducted for VVV Netherlands.
  • The Innovation Performance of Regions: Concepts and Cases (2012-2013). A qualitative comparative study on the conditions under which regional innovation ecosystems perform well, applying this knowledge to the case of Skolkovo (Russia). Commissioned by the Skolkovo Foundation. In partnership with UrbanIQ.