Strategies for Improving Performance
Edited by Peter Karl Kresl and Daniele Ietri
Chapter 5: Competition and collaboration in creating a world city from polycentricity in central Scotland
It is now widely accepted that there is competition between cities for a variety of resources and for some events. In a globalising world, there is competition for an enhanced share of global corporate and public investment in enterprises and infrastructure. Population, especially skilled and creative workers, are increasingly mobile and cities will compete to attract them often through enhanced quality of life. Corporate enterprises are now much more mobile, partly because they have been more dependent upon the transmission of information and knowledge to conduct their business, and partly because they are more likely to regard the world as their market and source rather than merely local or regional catchment areas. Competition has been fostered by the growth of multi-national free-trade areas such as the European Single Market and the NAFTA, and by national bodies such as the United Kingdom Monopolies and Mergers Commission. Porter (1998) argued that cities can compete in the way that firms and nation states compete, albeit by using different strategies and measuring their competitive success in terms of different objectives. Krugman (1991) argued that cities do not compete because they do not have a single decision-making body (such as a corporate board of management or a national government with powers over interest rates or exchange rates), but his views have largely been superceded by a volume of work stressing the role of competition and competitiveness between cities (Moore Begg and 2004).
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