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Durham University

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Publication details

Hadjimichalis, C. & Hudson, R. (2007). Rethinking Local and Regional Development: Implications for Radical Political Development in Europe. European urban and Regional Studies 14(2): 99-113.

Author(s) from Durham


This article focuses upon the practicalities of what people actually do and can do in the present era of neo-liberal globalization to build more progressive local and regional development strategies in Europe. To do so, we introduce three examples of'alternative' local and regional development activities in Europe: (a) social economy projects to tackle problems of localized social inequalities and local development; (b) public sector procurement and related intiatives to create healthier diets; and (c) participatory municipal budgets as a means to make radical participatory democracy a practical proposition. We discuss the issues that arise from them in terms of a radical local and regional development strategy and how they help to re-formulate our theoretical agendas and research practice. Unlike many uncritical studies of `successful' places that then seek mechanistically to transplant the bases of `success' as `off the shelf ' blueprints to be applied in and to other places we instead see these examples as providing an alternative framework for thinking about local and regional development that adapts more general principles (such as those of equity, accountability and democracy) to the specifics and local and regioanl circumstances.