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SPATIAL INEQUALITY AND DEVELOPMENT Overview of UNU-WIDER Project

  • Kanbur, Ravi
  • Venables, Anthony J.

The UNU-Wider project on ‘Spatial disparities in development’, directed by Ravi Kanbur and Anthony J. Venables, has analyzed evidence on the extent of spatial inequalities in over 50 developing countries. The peer reviewed papers published under the auspices of the project find that spatial inequalities are high, with disparities between rural and urban areas, and also between geographically advantaged and disadvantaged regions. In many countries such disparities are increasing, partly as a consequence of the uneven impact of trade openness and globalization. While there are efficiency gains from the concentration of economic activity in urban centers and in coastal districts, the associated regional inequalities are a major contributor to overall inequality. They are particularly worrying if they align with political or ethnic divisions. The broad outline of appropriate policy for managing high and rising spatial disparities is also clear. The case for policy interventions to ensure a more spatially equitable allocation of infrastructure and public services, and for policies to ensure freer migration, has been made powerfully in the papers in this project.

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File URL: http://purl.umn.edu/127127
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Paper provided by Cornell University, Department of Applied Economics and Management in its series Working Papers with number 127127.

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Date of creation: Sep 2005
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Handle: RePEc:ags:cudawp:127127
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  1. Ravi Kanbur & Hillel Rapoport, 2005. "Migration selectivity and the evolution of spatial inequality," Journal of Economic Geography, Oxford University Press, vol. 5(1), pages 43-57, January.
  2. Escobal, Javier & Torero, Maximo, 2003. "Adverse Geography and Differences in Welfare in Peru," Working Paper Series UNU-WIDER Research Paper , World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
  3. Rodriguez-Pose, Andres & Sanchez-Reaza, Javier, 2003. "Economic Polarization Through Trade: Trade Liberalization and Regional Growth in Mexico," Working Paper Series UNU-WIDER Research Paper , World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
  4. Tarp Jensen, Henning & Tarp, Finn, 2004. "Trade Liberalization and Spatial Inequality: A Methodological Innovation in Vietnamese Perspective," Working Paper Series UNU-WIDER Research Paper , World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
  5. Wan, Guanghua & Zhou, Zhangyue, 2004. "Income Inequality in Rural China: Regression-based Decomposition Using Household Data," Working Paper Series UNU-WIDER Research Paper , World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
  6. Fan, Shenggen & Kanbur, Ravi & Zhang, Xiaobo, 2008. "Regional Inequality In China: An Overview," Working Papers 51157, Cornell University, Department of Applied Economics and Management.
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