Competitive cities in the global economy
Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, 2006 - Business & Economics - 445 pages
Urban areas are now home to more than half the population of OECD countries. Megacities like Tokyo with more than 35 million people and Mexico with about 18.5 million, and large agglomerations such as Montreal, Helsinki, Madrid and Stockholm are often called ‘engines of national growth’. They represent an important part of the national economy (up to 50% for Budapest, Seoul and Helsinki) and feature higher GDP per capita and productivity levels than their country’s average. But there is also an urban paradox as cities also harbour large pockets of unemployment and poverty and suffer from problems such as congestion, pollution and crime. So are urban regions sustainable in the long term? Balancing the economic advantages of cities with their accompanying problems, policy makers are rethinking the strategies to keep these ‘engines’ running smoothly.
Competitive Cities in the Global Economy is a synthesis report drawing from OECD metropolitan reviews. Based on a unique international database of 78 metro-regions, it provides indications related to large cities' performance within their countries. The report also addresses key dilemmas, including competitiveness and social cohesion, intergovernmental relationships and urban finance.
“This is a 'must read' publication, not only for those who already believe in the key importance of urban policy, but even more so for those who remain to be convinced.”
Alberto Ruiz-Gallardón, Mayor of Madrid, Spain
"The most comprehensive examination of the territorial dimension underlying economic growth today."
Saskia Sassen, author of Territory, Authority, Rights: From Medieval to Global Assemblages (Princeton University Press 2006).
“With the nation-state and the corporation seen as the world’s two competing economic and social units, the regional economy is often overlooked. It’s refreshing to see such detailed attention paid to its role as the real motor force of international growth.”
Richard Florida, author of The Flight of the Creative Class.
“This report on cities demonstrates that economic prosperity and social well-being are inseparable.”
Jean-Louis Borloo, Minister of Labour, Social Cohesion and Housing, France.
"A striking report that will force governments to reconsider their urban agenda".
Dr. Giulio Santagata, Minister of Government's Programmes, Italy.
“This report provides invaluable advice for policy makers as our cities grapple with profound change."
David Crane, Columnist on global issues, The Toronto Star
To access the video presentation, click on www.oecd.org/audiovideo/cities.
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