Urban Competitiveness and Innovation
Show Less

Urban Competitiveness and Innovation

Edited by Pengfei Ni and Zheng Qiongjie

Against the backdrop of today’s climate of economic globalization and the rapid development of information, this timely book explores the complex concept of competitiveness between cities. The expert contributors illustrate that innovation is a prerequisite for increasing urban competitiveness, and highlight the various ways that urban innovation-based competitiveness can be approached.
Buy Book in Print
Show Summary Details
You do not have access to this content

Chapter 3: Better cities, better planet: examples of governing against climate change from OECD countries

Lamia Kamal-Chaoui and Margo Cointreau


The slogan for the 2010 World Expo in Shanghai, China captures the important role being attributed to the urban dimension of contemporary societies: ëBetter City, Better Lifeí. While one could argue that this oversimplifies reality, it does allude to the scale and importance of urbanization across the globe: today, approximately half of the worldís population lives in cities; by 2050, the figure will probably be two-thirds. As key engines of the global economy, cities are responsible for the bulk of national output, innovation and employment, and they are strategic gateways of transnational capital flows and global supply chains (OECD, 2006). It is not surprising that cities consume a preponderanceñbetween 60 and 80 per centñof energy production worldwide and account for a roughly equal share of global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. All projections indicate that this trend will continue as urban populations grow. The World Expo slogan could also be adapted to describe the proactive role of cities in action against climate change and facilitating the worldís transition towards a greener economy: ëBetter Cities, Better Planetí. How cities grow in the coming decadesñtheir activities and their urban formñwill have a considerable impact on both environmental quality and national competitiveness. By 2030, according to the International Energy Agency (OECD/IEA, 2008), cities will account for 87 per cent of the energy consumption in the United States, up from 80 per cent in 2006.

You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.

Elgaronline requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books or journals. Please login through your library system or with your personal username and password on the homepage.

Non-subscribers can freely search the site, view abstracts/ extracts and download selected front matter and introductory chapters for personal use.

Your library may not have purchased all subject areas. If you are authenticated and think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

Further information

or login to access all content.