Wales Institute of Social & Economic Research, Data & Methods
Sefydliad Ymchwil Gymdeithasol ac Economaidd, Data a Dulliau Cymru

Heads of the Valleys Boundaries

Start Date: March 2011 

End Date: December 2011 

Research Team:

Stephen Burgess
Kate Moles 


The project engaged with the various ways that the Heads of the Valleys region has been bound. Drawing on policy documents; the WISERD localities stakeholder interviews and some small scale follow up interviews, and engaging with different levels of stakeholders (for example: residents, community activists, etc).  Using Agnew and Duncan’s Location, Locale and Sense of Place the research team looked at the ways different knowledge regimes use, adopt, disrupt, corrupt and embrace the various and shifting definitions of the Heads of the Valleys region. 

Research Questions

  • Where is the Heads of the Valleys?
  • How did this definition emerge, who uses it and why?
  • Who is this definition meaningful to and how does it infiltrate different understandings of participants’ sense of place?
  • How do boundaries define and produce the areas they bound?
  • How do particular characteristics become attributed to constructed regions?
  • How is the relationship between the social and spatial negotiated through the construction of boundaries?



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