Handbook of Regional Growth and Development Theories
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Handbook of Regional Growth and Development Theories

Revised and Extended Second Edition

Edited by Roberta Capello and Peter Nijkamp

Regional economics – an established discipline for several decades – has undergone a period of rapid change in the last ten years resulting in the emergence of several new perspectives. At the same time the methodology of regional economics has also experienced some surprising developments. This fully revised and updated Handbook brings together contributions looking at new pathways in regional economics, written by many well-known international scholars. The aim is to present the most cutting-edge theories explaining regional growth and local development. The authors highlight the recent advances in theories, the normative potentialities of these theories and the cross-fertilization of ideas between regional and mainstream economists. It will be an essential source of reference and information for both scholars and students in the field.
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Chapter 16: Territorial development and proximity relationships

André Torre


The purpose of this chapter is to analyse and establish the link between territorial development and proximity relations, in order to show how the proximity-based approach could help gain a better understanding of territorial development processes. It is based on the idea that the definition of two main categories of territorial innovations and their inclusion in a new interpretation of Hirschman’s tripod, of exit–voice–loyalty, open the way to new analyses of the combinations of proximities that will help to determine the foundations and the occurrence of territorial development processes. We first provide a precise and well-supported definition of territorial development, before analysing and discussing the two driving forces behind territorial development – relationships of production and modes of governance – while exploring their theoretical legacy in light of the proximity studies. Then we conduct a detailed static analysis of the link between proximity relationships and territorial development processes by widening the notions of innovation and of Hirschman’s tripod to include territorial situations – relating to production or governance. Eventually we provide a dynamic analysis of the paths to territorial development and their links to proximity relations.

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