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Cities in the developing world

  • Henry G. Overman
  • Anthony J. Venables

Rapid urbanisation is a major feature of developing countries. Some 2 billion more people are likely to become city residents in the next 30 years, yet urbanisation has received little attention in the modern development economics literature. This paper reviews theoretical and empirical work on the determinants and effects of urbanisation. This suggests that there are substantial productivity benefits from cities, although unregulated outcomes may well lead to excessive primacy as externalities and coordination failures inhibit decentralisation of economic activity. Policy should operate both by identifying and addressing these market failures, and by seeking to remove institutional obstacles to decentralisation.

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File URL: http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/19887/
File Function: Open access version.
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Paper provided by London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library in its series LSE Research Online Documents on Economics with number 19887.

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Length: 36 pages
Date of creation: Jul 2005
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ehl:lserod:19887
Contact details of provider: Postal: LSE Library Portugal Street London, WC2A 2HD, U.K.
Phone: +44 (020) 7405 7686
Web page: http://www.lse.ac.uk/

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  8. Duranton, Gilles & Puga, Diego, 2000. "Nursery Cities: Urban Diversity, Process Innovation, and the Life-Cycle of Products," CEPR Discussion Papers 2376, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  9. Lall, Somik V. & Jun Koo & Chakravorty, Sanjoy, 2003. "Diversity matters - the economic geography of industry location in India," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3072, The World Bank.
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  11. Jonathan Eaton & Zvi Eckstein, 1994. "Cities and Growth: Theory and Evidence from france and Japan," Boston University - Institute for Economic Development 36, Boston University, Institute for Economic Development.
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  13. Khalid Nadvi, 1999. "The cutting Edge: Collective efficiency and international competitiveness in Pakistan," Oxford Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 27(1), pages 81-107.
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  18. Wheaton, William C & Shishido, Hisanobu, 1981. "Urban Concentration, Agglomeration Economies, and the Level of Economic Development," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 30(1), pages 17-30, October.
  19. Richardson, Harry W, 1987. "The Costs of Urbanization: A Four-Country Comparison," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 35(3), pages 561-80, April.
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