Loughborough University
SSRN[1].pdf (297 kB)

Life after regions? The evolution of city-regionalism in England

Download (297 kB)
journal contribution
posted on 2010-09-02, 14:29 authored by John HarrisonJohn Harrison
This paper examines the evolving pattern of city-regional governance in England. Following the demise of English regional policy in 2004, city-regions have come to represent the in vogue spatial scale amongst policy elites. The result has been a proliferation of actual and proposed policies and institutions designed to operate at a, variously defined, city-regional scale in England. Nevertheless, attempts to build a city-regional tier of governance have been tentative and lacking coherence. Alongside this city-regions are to be found emerging alongside existing tiers of economic governance and spatial planning. Arguing that what we are witnessing is not ‘life after regions’ but life with (or alongside) regions, the analysis presented argues that to understand why contemporary state reorganisation results in a multiplication of the scales economic governance and spatial planning we must recognise how the state shapes policies in such a way as to protect its legitimacy for maintain regulatory control and management of the economy. The final section relates these findings to wider debates on state rescaling and speculates on the future role of transition models in sociospatial theory.



  • Social Sciences


  • Geography and Environment


HARRISON, J., 2010. Life after regions? The evolution of city-regionalism in England. Regional Studies, iFirst article, pp. 1-17.


Routledge (© Regional Studies Association)


  • AM (Accepted Manuscript)

Publication date



This item was accepted for publication in the journal, Regional Studies [© Regional Studies Association]. The definitive version is available at http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/00343404.2010.521148].




  • en