Networks, Governance and Economic Development

Networks, Governance and Economic Development

Bridging Disciplinary Frontiers

Edited by Mari Jose Aranguren Querejeta, Cristina Iturrioz Landart and James R. Wilson

This compact and authoritative book brings together the topical themes of networks and governance to advance understanding of the determinants of local economic development in the context of increasingly global relationships.


Mari Jose Aranguren Querejeta and Roger Sugden

Subjects: economics and finance, regional economics, geography, economic geography, urban and regional studies, clusters, regional economics


In November 2005 we convened (in San Sebastián, Spain) a European Science Foundation Exploratory Workshop focused on the governance of networks as a determinant of local economic development. As a point of departure, the workshop aimed to explore the initial hypothesis that the significant economic differences across various forms of networks arise from their respective modes of governance, defined in terms of strategic decision making. Because an objective was to fuse different approaches, the workshop brought together an international group of scientists from economics, geography, sociology, political science and business, to present their ideas, refine the initial hypothesis and consider a related set of research questions. This volume and each of its chapters is a result of that workshop. It brings together analysis first presented in San Sebastián and subsequently revised following the workshop discussions and deliberations. In doing so, the volume presents a series of contributions that address key issues and cases, thus providing new insights on the significance of networking and governance for economic development. A focus on firms’ networking as an ‘engine’ for local economic development is by no means a new approach, although one feature of this volume is particular recognition of the potential for networks to operate across localities, enabling specific places to develop and/or sustain positions as ‘competitive hubs’ in networks of global production activities. That contrasts with the emphasis seen in much of the earlier literature on geographical proximity as crucial in facilitating the...