Spaces of consumption, connection, and community: Exploring the role of the coffee shop in urban lives

Jennifer Ferreira, Carlos Ferreira, Elizabeth Bos

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    34 Citations (Scopus)
    1101 Downloads (Pure)


    Coffee shops have been described as ‘third places’ in urban lives separate from the work and home, providing places for people to meet, relax and develop connections. However, the growing presence of coffee shops in the urban landscape has meant that they increasingly take on a wider range of roles, becoming spaces of both leisure and work but also providing spaces of sociality in which people can develop connections, and potentially communities. The roles of coffee shops in five cities in England are explored in order to consider how they can be understood not only as spaces of consumption, but spaces which facilitate connection in increasingly isolated urban lives, and generate the potential for communities to develop. By understanding the varied ways in which businesses and consumers co-create these spaces, it may be possible to increase their potential as ‘spaces of community’.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)21-29
    Number of pages9
    Early online date8 Jan 2021
    Publication statusPublished - Feb 2021

    Bibliographical note

    NOTICE: this is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in Geoforum. Changes resulting from the publishing process, such as peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting, and other quality control mechanisms may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication. A definitive version was subsequently published in Geoforum, 119, (2021) DOI: 10.1016/j.geoforum.2020.12.024

    © 2021, Elsevier. Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International


    • Coffee
    • Coffee shops
    • Community
    • High street
    • Retail

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Sociology and Political Science


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