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Shanghai rising in a globalizing world


  • Yusuf, Shahid
  • Weiping Wu


In a globalizing world, cities at or near the apex of the international urban hierarchy are among the favored few--New York, London, and Tokyo--that have acquired large economic, cultural, and symbolic roles. Among a handful of regions that aspire to such a role--such as Hong Kong, Miami, and Sao Paulo--Shanghai has reasonable long-term prospects. If the Chinese economy can sustain its growth rate, it will rival the United States in a few decades. And if Shanghai can sustain its preeminence in China, it is the Asian city most likely to become a global center. The authors explore the makings of a world city, identify ingredients essential for that status, indicate national and municipal policies that may set Shanghai on the path to being a global city, and show how such policies are being implemented. As urbanization continues, the authors say, and as information technology and finance-related service activities take on even more importance, the number of regional and global centers could increase, but only if they satisfy some exacting requirements. Shanghai's chances, for example, depend on the extent to which China opens up and on a host of municipal policies--policies that emphasize Shanghai's industrial strength, substantially enlarge its base of information technology and producer services, ensure an adequate supply of skills, expand available housing and infrastructure enough to meet demand, and improve the quality of life.

Suggested Citation

  • Yusuf, Shahid & Weiping Wu, 2001. "Shanghai rising in a globalizing world," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2617, The World Bank.
  • Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:2617

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Richard M. Bird, 2004. "Getting it Right: Financing Urban Development in China," International Tax Program Papers 0413, International Tax Program, Institute for International Business, Joseph L. Rotman School of Management, University of Toronto, revised Nov 2004.


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