Studentification and 'apprentice' gentrifiers within Britain's provincial towns and cities: extending the meaning of gentrification

Darren Smith, Louise Holt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper focusses on processes of studentification, and explores the link between higher education students and contemporary provincial gentrification. The paper provides two main, interconnected, contributions to advance debate on gentrification. First the discussion appeals for wider temporal analyses of the lifecourses of gentrifiers to trace the formation and reconfiguration of the cultural and residential predilections of gentrifiers across time and space. With this in mind, it is argued that there is a need to rethink the role of students within the constraints of third-wave gentrification, and to consider how 'student experiences' may influence the current and future residential geographies of young gentrifiers within provincial urban locations. Drawing upon recent studies of studentification, it is asserted that this profound expression of urban change is indicative of gentrification. Second, the paper advances Clark's recent call to extend the term gentrification to embrace the wider dominant hallmarks and tendencies of urban transformations. Controversially, in light of a deepening institutionalisation of gentrification, we contend that gentrification can be most effectively employed at a revised conceptual level to act as a referent of the common outcomes of a breadth of processes of change.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)142-161
Number of pages20
JournalEnvironment and Planning A
Publication statusPublished - 2007


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