Sustainability identity management: a case study of Curitiba

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Silva, Andre L.
University of Lethbridge. Dhillon School of Business
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Lethbridge, Alta. : University of Lethbridge. Dhillon School of Business.
This study is an in-depth case analysis of Curitiba, Brazil, that describes the city’s efforts in maintaining an identity centered around sustainability on social media. I use Multimodal Discourse Analysis to gather and interpret data from the city’s Facebook fanpage for 30 days. As a theoretical framework I utilized Social Identity Theory and concepts derived from Place Identity. The data showed that the city’s novel and deliberate communication strategy is successful in engaging with users and maintains the idea of the “Sustainable City” in 4 ways: Creation of a cohesive ingroup; alignment between resident expectation and image being portrayed on social media; creation of an open forum and encouragement of participation; and indication of desired behaviours. In addition, this study identified and addressed current gaps in the literature such as the importance of modern typologies for governmental communication strategies and the necessity of qualitative analysis in studying social media engagement.
citizen engagement , deliberate communication strategies , government communication , social media , sustainability , user engagement