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The socio-spatial dynamics of development: geographical insights beyond the 2009 World Development Report


  • James T. Murphy


The 2009 World Development Report: Reshaping Economic Geography has drawn significant attention to the influence of `first-order' (for example transportation costs, market contexts) geographies on development processes. Despite the recognition, numerous geographers have criticized the Report for its failure to engage with ideas from outside economics, particularly those associated with 'second-order' (for example social, political) factors that influence economic development. This paper details three of these missing geographies and demonstrates how urban--regional development is influenced by socio-spatial factors, context-specific mobilities, power asymmetries and the quality of a region's ties to transnational production networks. Beyond highlighting these factors, the paper argues for improved policies through the integration of economists and geographers' perspectives on the role of density, distance and division in development. Copyright 2011, Oxford University Press.

Suggested Citation

  • James T. Murphy, 2011. "The socio-spatial dynamics of development: geographical insights beyond the 2009 World Development Report," Cambridge Journal of Regions, Economy and Society, Cambridge Political Economy Society, vol. 4(2), pages 175-188.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:cjrecs:v:4:y:2011:i:2:p:175-188

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