Cities and Regions in Crisis
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Cities and Regions in Crisis

The Political Economy of Sub-National Economic Development

Martin Jones

This book offers a new geographical political economy approach to our understanding of regional and local economic development in Western Europe over the last twenty years. It suggests that governance failure is occurring at a variety of spatial scales and an ‘impedimenta state’ is emerging. This is derived from the state responding to state intervention and economic development that has become irrational, ambivalent and disoriented. The book blends theoretical approaches to crisis and contradiction theory with empirical examples from cities and regions.
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Chapter 12: Beyond withered local states

Martin Jones


This chapter article builds on the large but dispense body of work concerned with the local state and the role of local government therein. Set within the context of labour market and welfare state restructuring in neoliberalism, it suggests that there is an emerging consensus for a more robust and proactive involvement by local government. The chapter argues that initiatives for reactivating the local state have been deployed and tested in Denmark, with local government playing a central role in socioeconomic governance. It unpacks Denmark's 'welfare-through-work' model—a policy-making system built around negotiated and inclusive systems of regulation and governance—and highlights some of the still relevant lessons for re-engaging local authorities in the UK.

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