3. Dancing in the Dark: 24h City and the Night-Time Economy

Chairpersons: Giacomo Bottà, Docent in Urban Studies, University of Helsinki

Mika Hyötyläinen, Doctoral candidate in Social Policy, University of Helsinki


TYÖRYHMÄSESSIO III / SESSION III: Perjantai / Friday 09:30-11:00

  1. Giacomo Bottà : Valo yössä: the Night Time Economy as research subject and development strategy in Helsinki

2. Damiano Cerrone: Instagram walk, through the nights of Helsinki

3. Antti-Ville Kärjä: Converted clubbing: the political economy of the sacred in the case of religious buildings transformed into nightclubs

4. Martin Cloonan: Oxford Town, Oxford Town: Popular Music, Scenes and the Night Time Economy in a small city


Työryhmäkuvaus / Session Description:

”Day and night are distinguished by the amount of natural light but they are also separated by rhythms, orders, rituals and images created by humans. Daily schedules were originally created in agricultural societies that were entirely depended on the daylight and on weather conditions. 21st century cities with their dense population and comprehensive traffic networks guided by the streetlights offer arenas for disrupting and re-thinking established daily schedules.

The Night-Time Economy (NTE) has been slowly establishing itself as a significant instrument for contemporary post-industrial urbanization and it represents a growing field of research within the urban studies. On one hand, the night can be understood and analyzed as ‘a time of its own’ with certain activities taking place, specific regulations being applied and targeted infrastructures used. On the other, neo-liberal forces are colonizing the night for financial profit, often disregarding its specificities and simply extending city daytime activities, into a 24/7 consumption system. However, the night still nowadays defines how and when citizens rest, use certain spaces and socialize, and it maintains features, which cannot be fully controlled and regulated.

Cities across the world have established Night Majors or night commissions, dealing with issues ranging from night clubbing to smart illumination, from noise pollution to urban mobility, from the establishment of ‘safe spaces’ to safeguarding specific night occupations. In this session, we invite papers dealing with NTE from various economic, sociological, geographical, political and cultural perspectives and from a combination of the above. This session is organized with the support of the Urban Academy (University of Helsinki, Aalto University and City of Helsinki).

Papers may focus on various themes, including NTE and entrepreneurship, night-life and clubbing, mobility, safety and the night, safe spaces, services, regulations and the night, transgressions after dark, night citizenship, night services and regulations, ecological consequences of a NTE, sustainability and NTE or Helsinki as a night city.”