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Synekism[1] is a concept in urban studies coined by Edward Soja. It refers to the dynamic formation of the polis state — the union of several small urban settlements under the rule of a "capital" city (or so-called city-state or urban system). Soja's definition of synekism, mentioned in Writing the city spatially, is "the stimulus of urban agglomeration."

Social science[edit]

From the social sciences' view, it is also a "nucleated and hierarchically nested process of political governance, economic development, social order, and cultural identity" Soja (2000:13-14).

In densely settled urban places, a critical-mass provides potential for innovation that is not typically available in rural environments, therefore synekism can be thought of a the geographical relationships that create and give importance to cities.


  1. ^ Greek: σύνοικος "joint dweller", συνοικία "cohabitation".

Further reading[edit]