IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

England's Problem Region: Regionalism in the South East


  • Peter John
  • Steven Musson
  • Adam Tickell


England's South East is the most affluent and privileged place in the UK. Yet it is also the most institutionally weak and geographically divided of all the English regions. And while all the English regions are to some extent unnatural artifices, the South East is defined mainly in relation to an external space: London. The new, post-1997 regional bodies - RDAs, Regional Assemblies and expanded Government Offices - have the task of constructing and legitimizing an institutional framework that is unable to incorporate the heart of the regional economy in the capital city. There is as a result little popular support in the South East for regional government, and limited pan-regional cohesion among elites (which tend to have a fragmented, local focus). Incentives for a fuller regional mobilization may, though, emerge as a defensive strategy to prevent the migration of resources to more coherent and economically disadvantaged northern regions. Le sud-est d'Angleterre est la region la plus riche et la plus favorisee du Royaume-Uni. Toujours est-il que c'est la region la plus faible pour ce qui est des institutions et la plus divisee sur le plan geographique. Tandis que toutes les regions d'Angleterre sont dans une certaine mesure des constructions artificielles, le sud-est se voit delimiter dans une large mesure en fonction d'un espace externe: a savoir, Londres. Les nouveaux organismes regionaux qui datent de 1997 - les agences de developpement regional (Regional Development Agencies - RDA), l'Assemblee regionale (Regional Assembly) et l'elargissement de l'Administration (Government Office) - sont charges de construire et de legaliser un cadre institutionnel qui ne sait pas incorporer le noyau de l'economie regionale dans la capitale. Du cote du grand public du sud-est, il y a peu de soutien en faveur du regionalisme, et une cohesion panregionale limitee parmi les elites, qui ont tendance a avoir un point de mire plutot fragmente et local. Cependant, il est possible que des actions en faveur d'une mobilisation regionale de plus grande portee voient le jour en tant que strategie defensive afin d'empecher une fuite de ressources adestination des regions septentrionales qui sont plus coherentes et, du point de vue economique, plus defavorisees. Der Sudosten Englands ist die wohlhabendste und privilierteste Gegend des Vereinigten Konigreichs, doch institutionall gesehen ist es gleichzeitig auch die am schwachsten entwickelte und geographisch die am starksen aufgesplitterte aller englischen Regionen. Obwohl alle englischen Regionen gewissermassen als unnaturlich zusammengestuckelte Gebilde anzusehen sind, wird der Sudosten vorallem durch seine Beziehung zu einem ausserhalb liegenden Raum, namlich London, bestimmt. Die neuen, nach 1997 eingesetzten Korperschaften - RDA, Regionalversammlung und Regierungsstellen mit erweiterten Kompetenzen - haben die Aufgabe, einen institutionellen Rahmen zu erstellen und zu legimitisieren, dem es nicht gestattet ist, den Kern der regionalen Wirtschaft in der Hauptstadt mit einzubeziehen. Im Sudosten ist man nicht sehr fur eine Regionalregierung, und beschrankte, panregionale Eliten (meist mit fragmentiertem, lokal ausgerichtetem Blickfeld). Anreize fur eine umfassendere, regionale Mobilmachung konnen jedoch in Form einer defensiven Strategie zur Verhutung einer Abwanderung von Resourssen in zusammenhangendere und wirtschaftlich benachteiligte nordliche Regionen auftauchen.

Suggested Citation

  • Peter John & Steven Musson & Adam Tickell, 2002. "England's Problem Region: Regionalism in the South East," Regional Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 36(7), pages 733-741.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:regstd:v:36:y:2002:i:7:p:733-741 DOI: 10.1080/0034340022000006051

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. J Peck & A Tickell, 1995. "The social regulation of uneven development: 'regulatory deficit', England's South East, and the collapse of Thatcherism," Environment and Planning A, Pion Ltd, London, vol. 27(1), pages 15-40, January.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:taf:regstd:v:36:y:2002:i:7:p:733-741. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Chris Longhurst). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.