Today’s expert interview with Can Seng Ooi is the second time this year that we take you to Copenhagen, having previously interviewed Sebastian Zenker. From a place brand(ing) perspective, both Copenhagen and Denmark are intriguing cases due to their high recognition and regard internationally.
In this interview, Can Seng Ooi – Professor in International Business and Culture Industries at Copenhagen Business School and the director of the Center for Leisure and Culture Services – shares his thoughts on place branding both in Copenhagen and his native Singapore.
- The different perspectives on the relationship between culture and place branding;
- How place branding can help urban sustainability;
- Which paradoxes any place branding exercise must deal with;
- How Singapore has succeeded in increasing its profile;
- Whether place branding research and practice differ between Europe and Asia;
- The main challenges in place branding today.
Can Seng, you are a business professor at CBS but describe yourself as a sociologist and anthropologist – why?
I was trained as an anthropologist and sociologist at the National University of Singapore before I joined Copenhagen Business School. Over the years, I have managed to cross various disciplines and used different research methods in my work. The label I use depends on the situation and context. We call this situational identity.
I conduct research in a number of areas besides place branding. They include art worlds, tourism, urban sustainability and cross-cultural interaction. I teach mainly MBA classes on international business and corporate social responsibility.