New spatialities of work in the city

Darja Reuschke, Carol Ekinsmyth

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This introduction discusses the objectives and concepts underlying the Special Issue on the new spatialities of work in the city. It highlights the urban impact of both the changing spatiotemporal working patterns and the increased diversity of workspaces that have resulted from post-industrial restructuring, globalisation, labour market flexibilisation and digitisation. Even pre-COVID-19, when the research in this Special Issue was undertaken, this impact on the urban structure and the social fabric of cities was significant, but it had remained underexplored. Here, therefore, we question models of work and commuting that continue to assume the spatially ‘fixed’ workplace, and explore how new understandings of workspace and multi-locality, developed in this Special Issue, can inform future research. This, we argue, is more important than ever as we come to understand the medium- and long-term impacts of pandemic-altered work practices in cities. We further argue that the spatialities of work need to be connected with research on health, job quality and wellbeing in cities – such as, for example, on the risks that COVID-19 has exposed for driving and mobile work.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2177-2187
Number of pages11
JournalUrban Studies
Issue number11
Early online date2 Jun 2021
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2021


  • commuting
  • employment/labour
  • freelance
  • homeworking
  • mobile work
  • self-employment


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