New regions and regionalisation through clusters: city-regions and new problems for the periphery

Mike Danson

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    11 Citations (Scopus)


    Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to introduce the role of territory in (city-) regionalisation and to revisit the problems of distance from the core in cluster strategies. The paper further aims to discuss the implications of how agglomeration and networking economies, strongly promoted and based on city regions, are being realised across national boundaries.

    Design/methodology/approach – The paper argues that there are negative spatial impacts for those areas which do not and cannot establish “core cluster” status. The focus on such “cores” threatens to exacerbate the peripherality of the non-core regions of the European Union, and especially those in the external (northern) border regions of Europe.

    Findings – Against an evolving pattern of reducing effective distances across the mainland continent through EU funding, Celtic and Nordic Europe is facing a relative increase in peripherality. Ownership and control of industry and the economy are becoming ever more concentrated and centralised at the core, and monetary and fiscal policies are driven by the needs of the market and so of the demands of the metropolitan heart of the continent. While the new territorial clusters are promising growth and development for some regions allowing them to converge on the core, this should not be allowed to obscure the threats to others which are becoming ever more disadvantaged.

    Originality/value – The paper highlights a major, albeit not much acknowledged, threat emanating from the current focus on city regions as “economic champions” in debates and policy making. Not only does this threaten to overlook, but, indeed, may create areas of “exclusion” and peripherality.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)260-271
    Number of pages12
    JournalInternational Journal of Public Sector Management
    Issue number3
    Publication statusPublished - 2009


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