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What the Analysis of 136 Studies from 1960 to 2020 Tells Us About Comparative Regionalism Studies


  • S C A El Maaly


In recent years (from the late 1990s to 2020), the number of studies comparing regional integration processes around the world has increased significantly. However, the number of papers aiming to group and analyse these studies in order to determine the main trends in the field is still very limited. We attempt to fill this gap by analysing 136 studies (journal articles, book chapters, institutional reports, working papers, research centre publications and university papers such as dissertations and theses) from 1960 to 2020. In this article, we identify the main terms used in comparative regionalism studies and their evolution. We present the historical development of the field and identify the main organisations that are often compared in these studies. We also present the main points of comparison and the methods used in these studies, and discuss the case of the European integration model in comparative regionalism studies (the n=1 problem). This work creates and analyses one of the largest databases available on comparative regionalism studies. It can therefore facilitate the work of students and researchers interested in comparative regionalism and contribute to the development of this field of research.

Suggested Citation

  • S C A El Maaly, 2022. "What the Analysis of 136 Studies from 1960 to 2020 Tells Us About Comparative Regionalism Studies," Economic Issues Journal Articles, Economic Issues, vol. 27(2), pages 31-85, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:eis:articl:222maaly

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Widodo, Tri, 2010. "Market Dynamics in the EU, NAFTA, North East Asia and ASEAN: the Method of Constant Market Shares (CMS) Analysis," Journal of Economic Integration, Center for Economic Integration, Sejong University, vol. 25, pages 480-500.
    2. Cobham, David & Robson, Peter, 1994. "Monetary integration in Africa: A deliberately European perspective," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 22(3), pages 285-299, March.
    3. Jens-Uwe Wunderlich, 2012. "Comparing regional organisations in global multilateral institutions: ASEAN, the EU and the UN," Asia Europe Journal, Springer, vol. 10(2), pages 127-143, July.
    4. Monika Ewa Kaminska & Jelle Visser, 2011. "The Emergence of Industrial Relations in Regional Trade Blocks — A Comparative Analysis," British Journal of Industrial Relations, London School of Economics, vol. 49(2), pages 256-281, June.
    5. Marie Lamy & Kai Phua, 2012. "Southeast Asian cooperation in health: a comparative perspective on regional health governance in ASEAN and the EU," Asia Europe Journal, Springer, vol. 10(4), pages 233-250, December.
    6. Evelyn S. Devadason & Shujaat Mubarik, 2020. "ASEAN and the EU: an assessment of interregional trade potentials," International Economics and Economic Policy, Springer, vol. 17(3), pages 705-726, July.
    7. Brigitte Weiffen & Leslie Wehner & Detlef Nolte, 2013. "Overlapping regional security institutions in South America: The case of OAS and UNASUR," International Area Studies Review, Center for International Area Studies, Hankuk University of Foreign Studies, vol. 16(4), pages 370-389, December.
    8. Rodrigue, Jean-Paul & Notteboom, Theo, 2010. "Comparative North American and European gateway logistics: the regionalism of freight distribution," Journal of Transport Geography, Elsevier, vol. 18(4), pages 497-507.
    9. Junichi Goto & Koichi Hamada, 1997. "EU, NAFTA, and Asian Responses: A Perspective from the Calculus of Participation," NBER Chapters, in: Regionalism versus Multilateral Trade Arrangements, pages 91-118, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    10. Ernst B. Haas, 1966. ""The Uniting Of Europe" And The Uniting Of Latin America," Journal of Common Market Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 5(4), pages 315-343, December.
    11. Mohammad Razaul Karim, 2019. "Same Principles but Different Outcomes of SAARC and ASEAN: Searching Gap," Journal of Public Administration and Governance, Macrothink Institute, vol. 9(1), pages 60-72, March.
    12. Haroldo Ramanzini Júnior & Bruno Theodoro Luciano, 2020. "Regionalism in the Global South: Mercosur and ECOWAS in trade and democracy protection," Third World Quarterly, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 41(9), pages 1498-1517, September.
    13. Nye, J. S., 1970. "Comparing Common Markets: A Revised Neo-Functionalist Model," International Organization, Cambridge University Press, vol. 24(4), pages 796-835, October.
    14. Haas, Ernst B. & Schmitter, Philippe C., 1964. "Economics and Differential Patterns of Political Integration: Projections About Unity in Latin America," International Organization, Cambridge University Press, vol. 18(4), pages 705-737, October.
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    More about this item


    Comparative regionalism; comparative regional integration; regionalism; regional economic integration; corpus; Cortext Manager;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • F15 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Economic Integration
    • R1 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General Regional Economics
    • F02 - International Economics - - General - - - International Economic Order and Integration


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