Abstract and Keywords
The size of cities is a crucial issue for the ability of an economy to promote economic growth and development. This article opens with discussing the transactions costs perspective and briefly reviews the different types of industrial clusters that exist. Furthermore, it explores how cities have grown during the twentieth century. At the turn of the twentieth century, the relationship between cities and national economic development was very simple. Large cities meant wealthy economies. However, at the turn of the twenty-first century, urban scale was not a simple indicator of urban productivity. In many parts of the world the most productive cities are not the largest. This fact poses major challenges to regional planning strategies that are discussed in detail. The article also argues that twenty-first-century planning strategies in many countries will involve the promotion of global connectivity, and this tendency toward polycentric urban systems will dominate land-use planning strategies.
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