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Economic Geographers and the Limelight: The Reaction to the 2009 World Development Report

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  • Andrés Rodríguez-Pose

Abstract

The reaction of economic geographers to the World Bank's World Development Report 2009 - Reshaping Economic Geography - has so far been a corporatist turf-protecting exercise. The report has been dismissed as the work of economists who completely ignore a rich tradition of work by 'proper' economic geographers. However, this negative response has prevented geographers from engaging constructively with the World Bank's analysis and proposals. In this note I argue that, while the report presents an accurate diagnosis of recent development trends and should be praised for its flexibility in providing numerous policy alternatives, geographers can significantly contribute to promote a discussion around two key issues in the report: its treatment of institutions and its recommendation of spatially-blind policies.

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Paper provided by Spatial Economics Research Centre, LSE in its series SERC Discussion Papers with number 0048.

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Date of creation: Apr 2010
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Handle: RePEc:cep:sercdp:0048

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Web page: http://www.spatialeconomics.ac.uk/SERC/publications/default.asp

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Keywords: economic geography;

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  1. Meric S. Gertler, 2003. "Tacit knowledge and the economic geography of context, or The undefinable tacitness of being (there)," Journal of Economic Geography, Oxford University Press, vol. 3(1), pages 75-99, January.
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  3. Dani Rodrik & Arvind Subramanian & Francesco Trebbi, 2002. "Institutions Rule: The Primacy of Institutions over Geography and Integration in Economic Development," NBER Working Papers 9305, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  8. Ron Boschma & R. Eriksson & U. Lindgren, 2008. "How does Labour Mobility affect the Performance of Plants? The importance of relatedness and geographical proximity," DRUID Working Papers 08-14, DRUID, Copenhagen Business School, Department of Industrial Economics and Strategy/Aalborg University, Department of Business Studies.
  9. Martin, Ron, 1999. "The New 'Geographical Turn' in Economics: Some Critical Reflections," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 23(1), pages 65-91, January.
  10. Koen Frenken & Frank Van Oort & Thijs Verburg, 2007. "Related Variety, Unrelated Variety and Regional Economic Growth," Regional Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 41(5), pages 685-697.
  11. Allen J. Scott, 2009. "World Development Report 2009: reshaping economic geography," Journal of Economic Geography, Oxford University Press, vol. 9(4), pages 583-586, July.
  12. Ron Boschma, 2005. "Proximity and Innovation: A Critical Assessment," Regional Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 39(1), pages 61-74.
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