Changing Urban and Regional Relations in a Globalizing World

Changing Urban and Regional Relations in a Globalizing World

Europe as a Global Macro-Region

Edited by Kathy Pain and Gilles Van Hamme

In this important book, Kathy Pain and Gilles Van Hamme bring together a prestigious group of contributors to provide a systematic assessment of the dynamic, multi-scale network restructuring and spaces of flows associated with globalization that have shaped Europe’s contemporary position in the world during the past decade.

Chapter 10: Europe in the global economy - policy at a crossroads

Kathy Pain and Gilles Van Hamme

Subjects: geography, cities, economic geography, human geography, urban and regional studies, cities, regional studies, urban studies


We return to the key questions raised in Chapter 1, which have been approached in different ways in successive chapters of the book. What is the nature and reality of globalization in the European context? What does this mean for Europe in functional terms? What does this mean for Europe in policy terms? First, we provide an overview of the main changes observed in our research, which shed light on the nature of globalization processes that are active in Europe, and we assess their relevance for policy. Second, we review evidence drawn from across the book to establish just what these changes mean for Europe functionally, and in a territorial context. We consider the extent to which Europe's emergent functional links correspond with its territorial boundaries and the degree to which the European Union (EU) has influence in areas of the world which matter most to its participation and resilience in the global economy. Third, we reflect on the implications of the findings for effective European policy. We explain how they inform the contradiction between objectives to promote Europe's economic growth in a global context on the one hand and its internal territorial cohesion on the other, as discussed in Chapter 1. We discuss policy options to stimulate Europe's positive engagement with the contemporary globalization processes we have identified, and we highlight the diverse roles, strengths, potentials and vulnerabilities of the European functional space to help inform policy choices to balance growth and cohesion objectives going forward.

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