IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Empirics Of The Metropolitan Productivity Patterns In Europe


  • Christian LONGHI

    () (GREDEG, University of Nice Sophia Antipolis,)


This paper focuses on the main European metropolitan areas and builds empirics on their evolution over the process of economic integration these last twenty years. These metropolitan areas are acknowledged to be the main engines of economic development in Europe, and to concentrate larger and larger shares of population, activities, R&D resources… Different theoretical frameworks have grounded these cumulative dynamics. Recently, regional and development policies have also based their action on these areas, through the concept of polycentricity for instance. The paper rests thus on a database of the forty main European cities over the period 1975-2000, disaggregated in twenty sectors of activity. First of all, the paper analyses the processes of convergence in terms of productivity or sectoral similarities at work between the different metropolitan areas as well as the evolution of their specialization in terms of value added or employment. An analytical framework is outlined thereafter, based on the rates of growth of productivity and employment, which allows us to define a dynamic view of this convergence process, and to map the dynamic comparative advantages of sectors in our metropolitan areas. In addition to the in-depth analysis of the cities, the results of these different steps show that the metropolitan areas are the main vectors of the process of European integration; a standard model of the metropolitan area seems to emerge as a result of this process.

Suggested Citation

  • Christian LONGHI, 2008. "Empirics Of The Metropolitan Productivity Patterns In Europe," Region et Developpement, Region et Developpement, LEAD, Universite du Sud - Toulon Var, vol. 27, pages 61-82.
  • Handle: RePEc:tou:journl:v:27:y:2008:p:61-82

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Ottaviano, Gianmarco I. P. & Thisse, Jacques-Francois, 2002. "Integration, agglomeration and the political economics of factor mobility," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 83(3), pages 429-456, March.
    2. Joeri Gorter & Albert van der Horst & S. Brakman & H.F.L. Garretsen & M. Schram, 2005. "New economic geography, empirics, and regional policy," CPB Special Publication 56, CPB Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis.
    3. Philippe Martin, 1998. "Can Regional Policies Affect Growth and Geography in Europe?," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 21(6), pages 757-774, August.
    4. Henderson, Vernon & Kuncoro, Ari & Turner, Matt, 1995. "Industrial Development in Cities," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 103(5), pages 1067-1090, October.
    5. Jacques-François Thisse & Tanguy van Ypersele, 1999. "Métropoles et concurrence territoriale," Économie et Statistique, Programme National Persée, vol. 326(1), pages 19-30.
    6. Abramovitz, Moses, 1986. "Catching Up, Forging Ahead, and Falling Behind," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 46(02), pages 385-406, June.
    7. Paul Krugman & Anthony Venables, 1993. "Integration, Specialization, and the Adjustment," NBER Working Papers 4559, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    8. Juan R. Cuadrado-Roura & TomÂs Mancha-Navarro & RubÊn Garrido-Yserte, 2000. "Regional productivity patterns in Europe: An alternative approach," The Annals of Regional Science, Springer;Western Regional Science Association, vol. 34(3), pages 365-384.
    9. Krugman, Paul & Venables, Anthony J., 1996. "Integration, specialization, and adjustment," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 40(3-5), pages 959-967, April.
    10. Christian Longhi & Antonio Musolesi, 2007. "European cities in the process of economic integration: towards structural convergence," The Annals of Regional Science, Springer;Western Regional Science Association, vol. 41(2), pages 333-351, June.
    11. R. Paci & A. Saba, 1997. "The empirics of regional Economic growth in italy. 1951-1993," Working Paper CRENoS 199701, Centre for North South Economic Research, University of Cagliari and Sassari, Sardinia.
    12. Bernard, Andrew B & Jones, Charles I, 1996. "Comparing Apples to Oranges: Productivity Convergence and Measurement across Industries and Countries," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(5), pages 1216-1238, December.
    13. Quah, Danny T., 1996. "Empirics for economic growth and convergence," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 40(6), pages 1353-1375, June.
    14. N/A, 1999. "Documents," South Asian Survey, , vol. 6(1), pages 109-113, March.
    15. Juan Cuadrado-Roura & Luis Rubalcaba-Bermejo, 1998. "Specialization and Competition amongst European Cities: A New Approach through Fair and Exhibition Activities," Regional Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 32(2), pages 133-147.
    16. Amiti, Mary, 1998. "New Trade Theories and Industrial Location in the EU: A Survey of Evidence," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 14(2), pages 45-53, Summer.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item



    JEL classification:

    • C10 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods and Methodology: General - - - General
    • O18 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Urban, Rural, Regional, and Transportation Analysis; Housing; Infrastructure
    • R11 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General Regional Economics - - - Regional Economic Activity: Growth, Development, Environmental Issues, and Changes
    • R12 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General Regional Economics - - - Size and Spatial Distributions of Regional Economic Activity; Interregional Trade (economic geography)


    Access and download statistics


    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:tou:journl:v:27:y:2008:p:61-82. 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: (Christophe Van Huffel). 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.