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Externalités d'informations et évolution des villes / Information externalities and the evolution of cities

Listed author(s):
  • GUILLAIN, Rachel


    (LATEC - CNRS - Université de Bourgogne)

Aujourd'hui, les activités qui font la ville se transforment. Les activités de services financiers, juridiques et de la recherche prennent une part de plus en plus importante dans les activités urbaines. Ces activités relèvent des fonctions de conception, de décision et de contrôle. Or elles utilisent beaucoup de capital humain et de haute technologie : cela les rend fortement consommatrices et productrices d'informations. Mais à l'ère de l'information, la concentration de ces activités dans les villes peut apparaître paradoxale. Si ces activités sont agglomérées, c'est qu'il existe un besoin de proximité pour échanger des informations. Or, aujourd'hui, grâce aux technologies de la communication, on peut transmettre des informations sans que le face à face soit nécessaire. Dans ces conditions, il convient se s'interroger sur les liens entre échanges d'informations, agglomération et dispersion. Le but de ce papier est de proposer des pistes de réflexions sur le rôle des échanges d'informations dans l'évolution urbaine. Il s'agit alors de différencier les interactions informationnelles selon leur sensibilité aux progrès des technologies et d'identifier leur impact agglomératif. Pour cela, nous nous appuyons sur les instruments de l'économie géographique. / Present-day city growth is chiefly the result of new tertiary activities such as financial and producer services, R&D, or business administration. These activities consume human capital, knowledge and high-tech capital, which are all rapidly changing inputs; they are based on complex decision-making processes; this renders them highly information-dependent. Inasmuch as these activities are the main key to understanding the city, information must play a leading role in understanding urban forms. The concentration of these activities in cities appears paradoxical in the era of information. They are agglomerated because of their need of proximity for exchanging information. But information can be transmited very easily at a long distance with new communication technologies. In this context, the links between information exchanges, agglomeration and dispersion have to be investigated. In the framework of economic geography, this paper aims to study the role of information exchanges in the evolution of cities. We shall split information exchanges according both to their sensitivity to the progress of communication technologies and to their agglomeration effect.

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Paper provided by LATEC, Laboratoire d'Analyse et des Techniques EConomiques, CNRS UMR 5118, Université de Bourgogne in its series LATEC - Document de travail - Economie (1991-2003) with number 1999-08.

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Length: 16 pages
Date of creation: Jun 1999
Handle: RePEc:lat:lateco:1999-08
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  1. Ota, Mitsuru & Fujita, Masahisa, 1993. "Communication technologies and spatial organization of multi-unit firms in metropolitan areas," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 23(6), pages 695-729, December.
  2. Gaspar, Jess & Glaeser, Edward L., 1998. "Information Technology and the Future of Cities," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(1), pages 136-156, January.
  3. Fujita,Masahisa, 1991. "Urban Economic Theory," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521396455, August.
  4. Imai, Haruo, 1982. "CBD hypothesis and economies of agglomeration," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 28(2), pages 275-299, December.
  5. Gehrig, Thomas, 1998. "Cities and the Geography of Financial Centres," CEPR Discussion Papers 1894, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  6. Krugman, Paul, 1991. "Increasing Returns and Economic Geography," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(3), pages 483-499, June.
  7. C. Baumont & J. M. Huriot, 1997. "Processus d’agglomération et définition de la ville," Post-Print halshs-01080945, HAL.
  8. C. Baumont & J. M. Huriot, 1998. "An Economic Definition of the City," Post-Print halshs-01080940, HAL.
  9. Philippe Julien & Denise Pumain, 1996. "Fonctions stratégiques et images des villes," Économie et Statistique, Programme National Persée, vol. 294(1), pages 127-135.
  10. Lucas, Robert Jr., 1988. "On the mechanics of economic development," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 3-42, July.
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