By Hideaki Hirata, M. Ayhan Kose and Christopher Otrok, 2013


Both global and regional economic linkages have strengthened substantially over the past quarter century. We employ a dynamic factor model to analyze the implications of these linkages for the evolution of global and regional business cycles. Our model allows us to assess the roles played by the global, regional, and country-specific factors in explaining business cycles in a large sample of countries and regions over the period 1960–2010. We find that, since the mid-1980s, the importance of regional factors has increased markedly in explaining business cycles especially in regions that experienced a sharp growth in intra-regional trade and financial flows. By contrast, the relative importance of the global factor has declined over the same period. In short, the recent era of globalization has witnessed the emergence of regional business cycles.

By Klaus R. Kunzmann, 2000


Medium-sized towns located beyond metropolitan regions in Europe are among the victims of the current metropolitan fever in Europe. Despite all political rhetoric and European efforts to promote territorial cohesion, regions outside metropolitan regions are particularly are and will continue to be effected by globalizing forces and strong regional competition. While future oriented creative and knowledge industries flourish in a few metropolitan regions and in the core of Europe, regions and towns beyond such conurbations, and in the periphery of Europe, are increasingly struggling to maintain their economic, social and cultural functions. Medium-sized towns in such regions are particularly hit by the increasingly competitive global economy. This is particularly true for such towns in the South Baltic Arc, which is threatened by demographic and economic stagnation, and where mediumsized towns are in the shadow of the larger metropolitan centres of Hamburg, Berlin Warsaw, Vilnius, Riga and St. Petersburg. In order to secure employment and to maintain their service function for a stagnating regional population, these medium-sized towns are forced to find their own profile between international orientation and local embeddedness.

The paper explores ways and means how to stabilize the economic, social and cultural development functions of medium-sized towns. It stresses the importance of the territorial capital as a base for local and regional action, as the people living in these towns are seen as the significant territorial capital. Their competence and tacit knowledge, their community commitment, and their international networks are the capital for creative governance, where local and regional institutions in a socio-political environment of mutual trust have to cooperate and compliment each other. Only in such partnership of local and regional institutions future-oriented initiatives can be developed and implemented.

Andrea Ascani, Riccardo Crescenzi, Simona Iammarino, 2012


This review offers an analysis of the main concepts explored in the regional and local economic development literature. We start by explaining the rationale for a regional approach to development in a context of growing internationalisation of the world economy. Therefore, the relevance of local social and institutional characteristics is discussed by arguing that favourable conditions for development are the result of a highly context specific combination of rules, norms and social relations which encourage and facilitate knowledge diffusion and exploitation mostly on a localised basis. In this respect, some evidence is provided about the emergence of spatial inequalities connected to the localised nature of development processes and innovative activities. We then discuss the importance of a bottom-up approach to economic development emerging from the frequent ineffectiveness of top-down policies employed to spur regional development. Finally, we argue that the increasing demand for decentralisation of powers and resources from central governments to regional and local administrations in most parts of the world in the last decades can be interpreted as the acknowledgement that regional forces and characteristics are strongly relevant in shaping local development trajectories in a context of increasing globalisation. In this framework, therefore, decentralisation represents the capacity of heterogeneous regions and territories to tailor specific development strategies in order to address their particular needs and influence their own destinies.

By Arjan H. Schakel & Emanuele Massetti, 2018


This article aims to explain longitudinal and cross-sectional variation in regional government composition – oversized majorities and incongruence between regional and national governments (cross-cutting) – and regional government alternation. The analysis focuses on the explanatory value of a wide range of regional-level institutional variables, such as majoritarian vs. proportional voting systems and established practices of consociationalism. In addition, it provides a tentative exploration of the impact of regional (i.e. non-state-wide) parties on government composition and alternation. The findings show that most institutional variables have the expected impact, e.g., majoritarian voting systems increase government alternation and consensual practices decrease both crosscutting and alternation. The analysis also suggests that regional parties impact on government composition and alternation in two ways. Strong regional parties increase cross-cutting and, once in office, they tend to reduce alternation. Smaller regional parties out of office tend to increase alternation and to decrease oversized government as their seat shares grow.