Globalization’s New Urban Form?
Edited by John Harrison and Michael Hoyler
Chapter 3: Megaregions and the urban question: the new strategic terrain for US urban competitiveness
We live, so the refrain goes, in an era of global urbanization where new-urban forms and new economic processes intermingle in complex and-perhaps unprecedented ways. As Taylor and Lang (2004) argue, urban-studies confronts the ‘shock of the new’. Indeed, Taylor and Lang offer a-helpful starting point for evaluating the question of what would it mean,-in an era of global urbanization, for megaregions-to be globalization’s new-urban form. They provide a list of 100 concepts describing recent urban-change, which, they point out, was by no means exhaustive when it was-compiled. It is difficult to imagine that in the decade that has passed since-its release this figure will not, at a minimum, have doubled. Of the 50 concepts-Taylor and Lang single out as describing new intercity relations, 48-include some variant of ‘global’, ‘world’, ‘international’, ‘transnational’ or-‘planetary’. In other words, if megaregions-are indeed globalization’s new-urban form, they have plenty of company in that role. The connection between urban form and economic process is of course-not a new scholarly concern. Since Manuel Castells (1977) first posed the-‘urban question’ four decades ago, critical urban studies have debated the-relationship between processes of capitalist accumulation and governance-and the production of urban space. Accordingly in this chapter I wish to-draw on some old insights to advance some new claims about contemporary-urbanization processes.
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