On the 3rd of November 2016, RegPol2 Team Estonia organized a national workshop under the title “Core-Periphery Relations between Discourses and Practices: Estonia and Beyond”. In the course of this workshop, six researchers from Estonia, Germany, the Netherlands and Canada introduced local academics and practitioners to the first results of their research work on peripheralization processes in Estonia.

The presentation by Sebastian Schulz (University of Tartu), Bradley Loewen (University of Economic Prague) and Martin Graffenberger (University of Leipzig) focused on “Regional and Innovation Policies and Practices”. By presenting examples from Estonia in a wider Central-Eastern European context, they raised the question where the notions of regional development and innovation come from and how they are applied in practice. Grete Kindel (University of Tartu), Martiene Grootens (University of Tartu) and Bianka Plüschke-Altof (Geomedia OÜ) discussed the “Role of Public Leaders in Shaping Peripheralization Practices and Discourses”. On the example of case studies conducted in Western, Central and South(-East) Estonia, they concentrated on processes and consequences of image-making in peripheral places. The presentations were followed by a lively discussion moderated by Geomedia consultant Rivo Noorkõiv.

The workshop was held within the framework of the annual Tartu Planners’ Conference, which took place on November 3-4, 2016. Under the title “Spatial Inequality and Planning”, more than 60 presentations, incl. the keynote lectures by Prof. Marju Lauristin and the Minister of Public Administration Arto Aas, were held. The discussion rounds, local field trips and conference dinner provided further opportunities for exchanging ideas and gaining knowledge on the national context.

For more information, see: http://planeerimiskonverents.ut.ee and http://www.regpol2.eu