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Mountains in a flat world: Why proximity still matters for the location of economic activity

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  • Andrés Rodríguez-Pose

    ()
    (London School of Economics)

  • Riccardo Crescenzi

    ()
    (European University Institute)

Abstract

Thomas Friedman (2005) argues that the expansion of trade, the internationalization of firms, the galloping process of outsourcing, and the possibility of networking is creating a 'flat world': a level playing field where individuals are empowered and better off. This paper challenges this view of the world by arguing that not all territories have the same capacity to maximize the benefits and opportunities and minimize the risks linked to globalization. Numerous forces are coalescing in order to provoke the emergence of urban 'mountains' where wealth, economic activity, and innovative capacity agglomerate. The interactions of these forces in the close geographical proximity of large urban areas give shape to a much more complex geography of the world economy.

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Paper provided by Instituto Madrileño de Estudios Avanzados (IMDEA) Ciencias Sociales in its series Working Papers with number 2008-09.

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Date of creation: 15 Oct 2008
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Publication status: Published in Cambridge Journal of Regions, Economy and Society 1(3), July 2008: 371-388
Handle: RePEc:imd:wpaper:wp2008-09

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Cited by:
  1. Andrés Rodríguez-Pose, 2011. "Economists as geographers and geographers as something else: on the changing conception of distance in geography and economics," Journal of Economic Geography, Oxford University Press, vol. 11(2), pages 347-356, March.
  2. repec:wip:wpaper:7 is not listed on IDEAS
  3. Petr Pavlínek, 2012. "The Internationalization of Corporate R&D and the Automotive Industry R&D of East-Central Europe," Economic Geography, Clark University, vol. 88(3), pages 279-310, 07.
  4. Kapitsinis, Nikolaos & Metaxas, Theodore, 2011. "Economic crisis and the role of state policies in current globalized economy. The case of Greece," MPRA Paper 43650, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  5. Christ, Julian P., 2010. "The geography and co-location of European technology-specific co-inventorship networks," FZID Discussion Papers 14-2010, University of Hohenheim, Center for Research on Innovation and Services (FZID).
  6. Christ, Julian P., 2009. "New Economic Geography reloaded: localized knowledge spillovers and the geography of innovation," FZID Discussion Papers 01-2009, University of Hohenheim, Center for Research on Innovation and Services (FZID).
  7. Riccardo Crescenzi, 2014. "The evolving dialogue between Innovation and Economic Geography. From physical distance to non-spatial proximities and 'integrated' frameworks," Papers in Evolutionary Economic Geography (PEEG) 1408, Utrecht University, Section of Economic Geography, revised Mar 2014.
  8. Ernest Miguélez, 2012. "How do geographically mobile innovators influence network formation?," Papers in Evolutionary Economic Geography (PEEG) 1208, Utrecht University, Section of Economic Geography, revised May 2012.
  9. Björn Frank, 2009. "Clean Evidence on Face-to-Face: Why Experimental Economics is of Interest to Regional Economists," MAGKS Papers on Economics 200904, Philipps-Universität Marburg, Faculty of Business Administration and Economics, Department of Economics (Volkswirtschaftliche Abteilung).
  10. Ernest Miguélez & Rosina Moreno, 2013. "“Mobility, networks and innovation: The role of regions’ absorptive capacity”," AQR Working Papers 201308, University of Barcelona, Regional Quantitative Analysis Group, revised Oct 2013.
  11. Stefan Hennemann & Diego Rybski & Ingo Liefner, 2011. "The Myth of Global Science," ERSA conference papers ersa10p246, European Regional Science Association.
  12. Carson, Matthew, 2010. "Guiding structural change : the role of government in development," ILO Working Papers 455097, International Labour Organization.
  13. Ernest Miguelez, 2013. "How does geographical mobility of inventors influence network formation?," WIPO Economic Research Working Papers 07, World Intellectual Property Organization - Economics and Statistics Division, revised Apr 2013.
  14. Wei-Bin Zhang, 2014. "National and International Inequalities in Income and Wealth in a Global Growth with Free Trade and National Inflation Policies," Global Economic Observer, "Nicolae Titulescu" University of Bucharest, Faculty of Economic Sciences & Institute for World Economy of the Romanian Academy, vol. 2(1), pages 22-40, May.

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