The purpose of this paper is first, to describe the role of market places in a Swedish context, second, to investigate how could market places catalyze sustainable development in a city located in a Swedish context, and third to analyze which are the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats involved, that could facilitate or obstruct the influence of market places in the process of sustainable development in the context of a city in the Swedish context.
As some municipalities already started to do in the European context, market halls can be restored or some new ones can be built as vibrant centres of activity, which would complement the city centre and along with other facilities become one of the hot-spots on a city’s or town’s map as scholars point out. Constantly reinventing themselves, market places still keep some of their initial features that generated sustainable design through history. Nowadays, apart from market places for food, new types of markets appear on the niche, but which, as the old market places, generate sustainable development in the city in a different interpretation.
Reviewing the literature will provide a base for the research which will be further tested using a case-study strategy to answer the research question: How can market places catalyze sustainable development in a mutualistic symbiosis with the city in a Swedish context? In biology, when being in a symbiotic mutualistic relationship, two organisms of different species co-exist, each benefiting from the activity of the other (Reese, 2013: 190).The market place and the city could develop a symbiotic relationship, in which, both influence mutually towards a sustainable outcome.
After the research identifies and tests how could market places influence the four spheres of sustainable development in the city, a SWOT analysis is conducted to identify the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats that could facilitate or obstruct the influence of market places in the process of sustainable development in a city.
The research will be relevant by adding to the previous studies, offering an understanding on how market places could influence in this manner and adding to the gap identified in the literature.
The research was carried out using semi-structured and unstructured interviews, observation and secondary data sources.