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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Gunter Krumme
GEOG 450
Seattle Campus

Theories of Location

Derives basic micro-economic, decision-theoretical, managerial, and organizational-theoretical principles underlying consumer, commercial, industrial, and government behavior in physical, economic, transportation, and communication (including cyber-) space. Recommended: GEOG 207. Offered: A.

Class Description

While Geography 450 is based on the premise that "location" still matters, it also explores how this premise has changed for different economic activities due to advances in communications technologies. The class surveys many of the location and spatial concepts which have become the theoretical foundation of much of the work in Social, Human and Economic Geography. We will derive basic micro-economic, decision-theoretical, managerial, organizational- and transaction- theoretical principles underlying consumer, commercial, industrial and governmental behavior in physical, economic, transportation, and communication (including cyber-) space. We will discuss these principles in the context of past, contemporary and foreward-looking conceptual frameworks.

This theoretical discussion will draw upon "real world" examples from a wide variety of specific spatial choice situations, including choices related to residence, recreation, employment, migration, communications (education, advertising, location on the Web), shopping, marketing, E-commerce, health care, and industrial investments. The discussion will cover (potentially) all spatially-significant activities in the private, corporate and public sectors, including spatial behaviors affected by government regulations, i.e. spatial behaviors in uncertain, complex and ambiguous environments at local, national and international levels. Some background or a strong interest in microeconomics (Econ 200/300) or economic geography (Geography 207) is highly desirable.

Major Course Objectives

At the end of this course, you should be able to:

Mix of lectures and seminar-style (group & class) discussion & explorations of prior readings.

Recommended preparation

A strong interest in explanation, theory formulation and historical theoretical developments in economic geography, and a 200- or 300-level background in micro-economics and/or economic geography (Econ.200 or 300 or Geog.207 or 350). If you are not sure whether your background and motivation are sufficient, ask me (E-mail:

Class Assignments and Grading

Regular weekly readings and brief writing assignments. One project (involving the tracing of theoretical ideas: "ROOTS") will be researched by students throughout the quarter and will result in a paper. Collaboration is encouraged for class preparations and research-related activities.

You will find your instructor's book purchase recommendations here [Click!] [Golledge and Hayter will be in the Bookstore, Hoover is online (for free!), all other readings will be "on Reserve" in OUGL or handed out in class].

Additional readings and materials will be made available to you. Do not hesitate to explore some of the readings as you find them on the Web page before the start of the quarter.

Your grade will be determined as follows: 1/3 will be based on in-class tests & quizzes [closed note-books for short answers; open note-books for essay-type questions], 1/3 on research & writing contributions, and 1/3 on participation (including attendance, preparations, test corrections, and involvement) peer collaborations, peer assistance and exercises.

The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Additional Information
Last Update by Gunter Krumme
Date: 08/21/2002