Agents and obstacles in city-region building: austerity, the local state and civil society.

Authors: David Beel*, Staffordshire University, Martin Jones, Staffordshire University, Ian Rees Jones, Cardiff University
Topics: Political Geography, Urban Geography, Economic Geography
Keywords: city region, local state. localism, devolution
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/10/2018
Start / End Time: 8:00 AM / 9:40 AM
Room: Proteus, Sheraton, 8th Floor
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


Duncan and Goodwin's (1988) book on the local state and uneven development posited two spatial relations occurring within advanced capitalism: local states as agents of central government processes and local states as obstacles of such processes. This, in turn, influenced debates on the making of localities and the involvement of political and civil society actors in these. Such concerns are ripe for revisiting, given recent instances of central-local policy remaking through decentralization devolution movements across the globe. In the UK, for instance, various city and devolution deals are making new localities through a realignment of central-local relations. This paper will engage with this, drawing on theoretical and conceptual debates via four case study city-regions in the UK to think through how a new geography of central-local relations has been created and the subsequent tensions this has generated.

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