Working Paper, Institute of Urban and Regional Development 2007,10
The new economic reality of heightened international competition, constant technological change, and cross border migration flowsreferred to in shorthand as globalizationhas upset traditional forms of governing capitalist economies. Nation-states were once considered the only appropriate scale to create socialist planned economies or establish the institutions that guide freemarket exchange. Today, many political scientists and sociologists argue that the sovereignty of national governments is either greatly diminished (Jessop 1994; Ohmae 1995; Peck 1994) or drastically restructured by networked forms of social exchange that ignore political boundaries (Castells 1996). Economic geographers and regional economists argue that globalization has ushered in a new form of competition through which the competitive advantage of firms is set by actors and institutions that operate at a regional or metropolitan scale (Sabel 1989; Storper 1997). Ultimately, there is an emerging consensus in the academic literature as well as policy discourse that the metropolitan scale is a key level of economic exchange.