Edited by Harry W. Richardson, Chang-Hee Christine Bae and Sang-Chuel Choe
Chapter 2: Regions and Regional Policy: A Global View
2. Regions and regional policy: a global view Sir Peter Hall In this chapter I seek to perform four tasks: first, to set the context: the major debate on regional policy in Korea, resulting in the new emphasis on promoting endogenous growth clusters; second, to look at recent evidence on regional economic performance in Europe, focusing particularly on city regions; third, to look at the historical evidence for the evolution of innovative growth clusters in the United States and Europe, and at worldwide attempts to promote such development in the form of science cities; and fourth, to look at two key elements of a regional development strategy aiming to reduce regional differences: better access, and upgrading human capital. THE KOREAN DEBATE Korea is a relatively small country, with a population of 48 508 972 living on a land area of only 98 480 sq km, roughly equal to Portugal or the US state of Indiana. However, within this small frame it is characterized by an extraordinary degree of regional imbalance, with nearly half the population and more than three-quarters of service industry concentrated in the national capital region (Lee 2009; Table 2.1). Earlier figures show that this percentage steadily increased over the last quarter of the twentieth century (Hong 1997). Korean regional policy has tried to address this imbalance for several decades. But, over recent years, there has been a market shift in emphasis: observing the performance of so-called ‘learning regions’ in North America, Europe and Eastern Asia, the ‘new...
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