A window on the (changing) neighbourhood: the role of pubs in the contested spaces of gentrification

OHBLR Ernst, B. Doucet

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

28 Citations (Scopus)


This paper examines the effects of gentrification through the lens of the interactions and perceptions which can be found in local, neighbourhood pubs. By interviewing predominantly Dutch, non-gentrifying customers in the rapidly gentrifying Indische Buurt neighbourhood in Amsterdam, we uncovered discourses which are both welcoming to, and cautious of the process. Three themes were examined: changes in the neighbourhood, changes in the role of pubs in daily life and changes in the interactions within pubs. In many respects, the process of gentrification is welcomed because it represents something 'Dutch' coming into the neighbourhood after years of immigration. Divisions between gentrifiers and non-gentrifiers are not experienced as starkly as is often portrayed in the literature; our respondents tended to be much more ambivalent than other non-gentrifying groups portrayed in studies elsewhere. This may be due to the more managed-nature of Dutch gentrification. However, there is a sense that one's pub is impervious to the changes in the rest of the neighbourhood, a discourse which must be taken into account when drawing any long-term conclusions from this study.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)189-205
Number of pages17
JournalTijdschrift voor Economische en Sociale Geografie
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2014


  • Amsterdam
  • Gentrification
  • Neighbourhood change
  • Pubs and amenities
  • Social interactions


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