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Curating the quest for 'good food': The practices, spatial dynamics and influence of food-related curation in Sweden
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Social and Economic Geography.
University of Southampton. (School of Geography and Environment)
2015 (English)In: Geoforum, ISSN 0016-7185, E-ISSN 1872-9398, Vol. 64, 205-216 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

What is ‘good food’? Is it fair trade, local, organic or ethically produced? With an ever-expanding array of products and ‘qualities’ to consider, consumers in the global North may find it increasingly difficult and time-consuming to make the ‘right’ choices. As a result, a range of intermediaries, including food apps and collective buying groups, are emerging to support people in their food choices. While intermediation refers to all activities linking producers and consumers, this paper narrows the focus and considers one important, yet poorly understood, intermediary function within the food marketplace: ‘curation.’ Although the concept of curation has long been associated with museums and art worlds, curatorial practices are evolving in the contemporary marketplace and are performed by a growing range of actors operating in physical, temporary and virtual spaces. Rather than acting as brokers or gatekeepers, curators interpret, translate and shape the marketplace by sorting, organizing, evaluating and ascribing value(s) to specific products. They also offer general and personalized recommendations to consumers. Drawing on interviews and participant observation, this paper aims to contribute to the existing literature on curation by examining curatorial practices, the motivations behind them and the values they create for consumers. As geographers we are particularly interested in how specific spatial dynamics shape curation and its outcomes. The findings suggest a need to nuance and extend existing conceptualizations of curation and to consider a wider and more dynamic range of actors (food apps), spaces (blogs) and values such as inspiration, convenience and sense of community.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. Vol. 64, 205-216 p.
National Category
Social Sciences Social and Economic Geography
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-234986DOI: 10.1016/j.geoforum.2015.06.024ISI: 000359887800021OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-234986DiVA: diva2:758616
Swedish Research Council Formas, 2009-310
Available from: 2014-10-27 Created: 2014-10-27 Last updated: 2015-09-16Bibliographically approved

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Joosse, SofieHracs, Brian
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