Through history, the majority of larger cities have been located on the coast, as ports and harbors were the hubs for most forms of trade, investment and innovation. Port cities are now on the front-line of a changing global urban system.
There are problems from restructuring of trade, logistics and ship-building, creating economic dependency, social exclusion and cultural destruction. Meanwhile, there exists new opportunities in heritage tourism, cultural industries and ecological restoration, but these opportunities often have negative impacts. as a result, many ports have lost their historic functions and suffer rapid decline. However, the port city as a ‘hotspot’ of decline can also offer opportunities as a hotspot for sustainable innovation, based on creative conjunctions of physical, social and economic resources.


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