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Governing Urban Economies

Governing Urban Economies: Innovation and Inclusion in Canadian City Regions

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  • Book Info
    Governing Urban Economies
    Book Description:

    Featuring an inter-disciplinary group of established and up-and-coming scholars, this collection breaks new ground in the Canadian urban politics literature and will appeal to urbanists working in a range of national contexts.

    eISBN: 978-1-4426-1722-3
    Subjects: Political Science, Geography

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-iv)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-vi)
  3. Foreword to the Series
    (pp. vii-xii)

    Innovation and creative capacity are essential determinants of economic prosperity in a globalizing, knowledge-based economy. Although the process of globalization has led to numerous predictions of the ʺdeath of distance,ʺ growing evidence suggests that the contemporary global economy make cities more – not less – important as sites of production, distribution, and innovation. Over the past decade, recognition has grown that even the most global of economic activities remain fundamentally rooted in city-regions as critical sites for organizing economic activity. More significantly, the social dynamics of city-regions are crucial in shaping economic outcomes (Gertler 2001).

    The interactive and social nature...

  4. Acknowledgments
    (pp. xiii-2)
  5. 1 Governing Urban Economies: Innovation and Inclusion in Canadian City-Regions
    (pp. 3-34)

    The last thirty years have been a period of great economic change. The globalization of competition and the continuous flow of new technologies have combined to create new challenges and opportunities for citizens, firms, and governments alike. The economic shocks and deep recession of the past several years have intensified the pressures and made the adjustments more complex and far-reaching. The dynamics move in several directions at once, affecting people and places differently. On the one hand, the premium placed on creativity and innovation in the knowledge-based economy offers tremendous rewards to those who develop and apply the best ideas....

  6. Part I: Institutionalized Collaboratives

    • 2 Social Actors and Hybrid Governance in Community Economic Development in Montreal
      (pp. 37-57)

      In many respects, Quebec society is distinct in North America. In addition to the French language and the Catholic religion of the majority of its population, Quebec society is highly unionized and has a large number of civic associations.¹ Social movements are important in Quebec, but the evolution of their role in state–society relations in the province is of particular significance. The economic turn taken by social movements in Quebec in the 1980s transformed unions and community actors into stakeholders in socio-economic development and governance. The distinctiveness of Quebecʹs approach to the governance of social and economic development is...

    • 3 Dimensions of Governance in the Megacity: Scale, Scope, and Coalitions in Toronto
      (pp. 58-87)

      The economic processes of globalization and the rapid pace of technological change are actively reshaping the urban economies of city-regions in Canada and around the globe. The dual challenges of maintaining economic competitiveness and addressing the emerging social inequalities resulting from these changes place new demands on local governments that are often too complex for them to meet on their own. In response, novel relationships are emerging between various levels of government, and among public, private, and community actors at the local level. Recent research reveals how such interactions shape development in city-regions, tracking how structures of municipal government are...

    • 4 Myth Making and the ʺWaterloo Wayʺ: Exploring Associative Governance in Kitchener-Waterloo
      (pp. 88-109)

      Despite all appearances, the Kitchener-Waterloo region, located an hour west of Toronto, is an extraordinary place. The region boasts a population of less than half a million inhabitants (Statistics Canada 2010). Its most important economic sectors are the automotive and advanced manufacturing industries. It has a junior hockey team, a bustling farmersʹ market, expanding big-box retail along the highways, and a revitalizing historic downtown. Many Canadians would have difficulty even locating it on a map. It is a quiet, mid-sized city.

      Considering this relatively pedestrian backdrop, it is somewhat surprising that Kitchener-Waterloo is a hotbed of innovation in information technology...

    • 5 The Politics of Coalition Building in a Deindustrializing City: Linkages, Leadership, and Agendas in Hamilton
      (pp. 110-134)

      Many cities in Ontario continue to struggle with the pressures of globalization and deindustrialization that have accelerated since the early 1980s. Despite lively discursive debates, questions about how cities actually go about trying to address these policy challenges have undergone relatively little empirical analysis in Canada. The central question of whether cities in Canadaʹs industrial heartland are developing their own strategic responses to social and economic change provides important insights into collaborative governance and the process of coalition-building in Canadian cities. Because they focus attention on shifting state and society relations within different local contexts, theories of urban governance provide...

  7. Part II: Sector Networks

    • 6 Linking Innovation and Inclusion: The Governance Question in Ottawa
      (pp. 137-160)

      This chapter examines different forms of governance that have emerged in the City of Ottawa in recent years and the extent to which these structures have created opportunities for partners to work together more effectively. In particular, we focus on the role of municipal governments and how they convene different sets of stakeholders to encourage the development of new forms of collaborative governance. Although local government is not the only institution involved, and often not the most important one, we argue that municipal governments can have a major impact on the inclusiveness and innovativeness of a particular city-region and that...

    • 7 Embarrassment and Riches: Good Governance and Bad Governance in the St Johnʹs City-Region
      (pp. 161-183)

      The St Johnʹs city-region is enjoying unprecedented prosperity. Oil and gas development off the provinceʹs east coast is driving direct and indirect economic benefits for the capital-city region of Newfoundland and Labrador (NL). The north-east region of the provinceʹs Avalon Peninsula is home to the oil and gas operators and an extensive network of suppliers. It is also the location of the oil revenue–rich provincial government, Memorial University, the provinceʹs research hospital, and major business and retail services. The North-East Avalon, as it is known, is growing in wealth, population, and geographic reach.

      The North-East Avalon (NEA) has not...

    • 8 300 People Who Make a Difference: Associative Governance in Calgary
      (pp. 184-202)

      Associative governancehas emerged as an alternative to traditional government-control or market-driven approaches to economic and social development (Streeck and Schmitter 1985; Cohen and Rogers 1993; Bradford 1998). According to its proponents, associative governance of­fers a ʺthird wayʺ of local governance, one that bridges public and private sectors and promotes collaboration between actors from different economic sectors in pursuit of coordinated social and economic development within a city-region (Cooke 2001; Leibovitz 2003). As Bradford and Bramwell (chapter 1) put it, the intent of associative governance is to ʺinstitutionalize representation and action-planning among the full range of actors deemed relevant to...

  8. Part III: Project Partnerships

    • 9 Challenge and Change in London: The Social Dynamics of Urban Economic Governance
      (pp. 205-228)

      Recently there has been growing awareness of cities as strategic policy spaces in the age of globalization. Contrary to predictions of the ʺlocationlessʺ effects of virtual communications and the ʺdeath of distanceʺ in a weightless economy, economic geographers and demographers track an intensification of urban agglomeration as knowledge-intensive firms seek business opportunities and skilled workers leverage professional networks. A host of studies now report that the competitiveness of nations increasingly depends on cities and localized supports for business innovation. Yet the same research also describes an ʺurban paradoxʺ wherein the opportunities for high value-added growth and the risks of social...

    • 10 Governance Innovations in Saskatoon: From State and Cooperatives to Local Partnerships
      (pp. 229-247)

      Saskatoon is an interesting example of a resource-based, export-dependent, knowledge-intensive creative community that has been forced to develop, adapt, and adopt new more open governance models and mechanisms. Historically, Saskatchewan (and at times Saskatoon) has been a continuing source of innovations in collaborative governance – the province led in the adaptation and adoption of the cooperative model to socio-economic development and was one of the first to exploit the transformative power of the state (including creating a number of management innovations). As recently as the 1990s, Saskatchewan was a classic case of centrally-directed rational planning, with much of the economy...

    • 11 The Missing Link: Immigrant Integration, Innovation, and Skills Underutilization in Vancouver
      (pp. 248-272)

      Globalization, new technologies, changing demographics, and the shift to a knowledge-based economy are transforming the social and economic landscape and ushering in a new set of challenges in the process. The relative importance of human capital is growing and the skills required to compete in the global economy are changing. It is widely acknowledged that the competition for talent, skills, and education has become global and that the contest will only intensify as more and more nations develop strategic initiatives that target the emerging needs of the changing economy. Industrialized nations recognize that human-capital needs are crucial to innovation and...

    • 12 The Bumpy Road to Regional Governance and Inclusive Development in Greater Moncton
      (pp. 273-294)

      Cities undertake economic development activities for various reasons, not least of which is to increase employment and income opportunities for their residents.¹ Municipal economic development strategies often privilege certain jobs or industrial sectors based on the assumption that favouring key sectors will generate localized spending throughout the economic base in other areas such as construction, retail, and personal services. Social welfare and income redistribution programs are often assumed to be sufficient to meet the needs of under- and unemployed workers. Yet widening income disparities indicate a reversal of the economic gains made by workers during the Golden Age of post...

  9. Part IV: Conclusions

    • 13 The Rise of Metropolitics: Urban Governance in the Age of the City-Region
      (pp. 297-318)

      City-centric narratives have assumed a viral quality in economic development circles around the world. Everywhere, it seems, cities are increasingly portrayed as powerful ʺengines of prosperityʺ for their regional hinterlands as well as their national economies. In intellectual circles the dominance of these narratives is epitomized by the title of a recent book on the urban renaissance,Triumph of the City, written by one of Americaʹs premier urban economists (Glaeser 2011). Politicians and policymakers are equally in thrall to city-centric visions of development. Trumpeting the idea that ʺour cities are back,ʺ Tony Blairʹs government went so far as to claim...

    • 14 Civic Infrastructures of Innovation and Inclusion? Reflections on Urban Governance in Canada
      (pp. 319-338)

      Canadian cities are young places in a young country, having evolved quickly and peacefully within the last three centuries from military forts and small trading outposts to diverse agglomerations of economic activity and social interaction in one of the most urbanized countries in the world. Canadian urban scholarship has not kept pace with these developments. Following on Katherine Grahamʹs assertion that ʺwe do not have home-grown theories of local government in Canadaʺ (Graham, Phillips, and Maslove 1998, 19) and Caroline Andrewʹs (2001) lament about ʺthe shame of (ignoring) the cities,ʺ Taylor and Eidelman (2010, 961–2) observe that ʺscholarship on...

  10. Contributors
    (pp. 339-342)