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Rob Shields

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University of AlbertaSociology, Art and Design Location Edmonton Canada Discipline(s): Sociology Research Interests: Cultural Studies, Urban Development, Sociology, Geography Languages: English Website: http://www.ualberta.ca/~rshields/
Biography

Rob is Henry Marshall Tory Chair and Professor in the Departments of Sociology and of Art and Design. Before being awarded the Tory Chair, Rob was Professor of Sociology and past Director of the Institute of Interdisciplinary Studies at Carleton University. His focus has been urban cultural studies, particularly the social use and meanings of the built environment, urban spaces and regions, including tourist destinations, local identities, and the impact of changing spatializations on cultural identities. This intellectual project has been extended through a peer-reviewed journal Space and Culture (Sage) founded in 1997 and publications on the spatiality of the city, consumption spaces as Lifestyle Shopping (ed. 1993) and Places on the Margin (Outstanding Book of the Year 1991). Recent research concerns the relevance of Cultures of Internet (ed. 1996) and The Virtual (2003) to everyday life and innovation in the production of the built environment (Building Tomorrow co-edited with André Manseau, 2005). By focusing on shopping malls, markets, theme parks, tourist attractions, and other embodied sites, Rob’s research seeks insights into the implications that spatialization, the metropolis and architecture have for personal identity and sociability, pleasure and taste, the cultures of public institutions, cities, and for ‘knowledge’ and ‘innovation’ societies. Rob has been funded as a Commonwealth Scholar and by the Social Science and Humanities Council of Canada, US National Science Foundation, and the UK Department of the Environment.