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The economic resilience of regions: towards an evolutionary approach


  • James Simmie
  • Ron Martin


In this paper, we review the different definitions of resilience and their potential application in explaining the long-term development of urban and regional economies. We reject equilibrist versions of resilience and argue instead that we should seek an understanding of the concept from an evolutionary perspective. After discussing a number of such perspectives, we focus on the adaptive cycle model from panarchy theory to generate testable hypotheses concerning urban and regional resilience. Two case study city-regional economies are used to explore this model. We conclude that the evolutionary adaptive cycle model, though not without problems, warrants further study as a framework for analysing regional economic resilience. Copyright 2009, Oxford University Press.

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  • James Simmie & Ron Martin, 2009. "The economic resilience of regions: towards an evolutionary approach," Cambridge Journal of Regions, Economy and Society, Cambridge Political Economy Society, vol. 3(1), pages 27-43.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:cjrecs:v:3:y:2009:i:1:p:27-43

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    Cited by:

    1. Rudrajeet Pal & Reimar Westerlind & HÃ¥kan Torstensson, 2013. "Exploring the resilience development process by implementing the crisis strategic planning framework: a Swedish textile SME perspective," International Journal of Decision Sciences, Risk and Management, Inderscience Enterprises Ltd, vol. 5(1), pages 1-34.
    2. Pradhan, Jaya Prakash, 2011. "Regional heterogeneity and firms’ innovation: the role of regional factors in industrial R&D in India," MPRA Paper 28096, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    3. Harald Bathelt & Andrew Munro & Ben Spigel, 2011. "Challenges of Transformation: Innovation, Re-bundling and Traditional Manufacturing in Canada's Technology Triangle," Papers in Evolutionary Economic Geography (PEEG) 1111, Utrecht University, Department of Human Geography and Spatial Planning, Group Economic Geography, revised Jun 2011.

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