Title: The city in the information and communication technology age: a comparative study on path dependency
Authors: Peter Nijkamp, Wouter Jonkhoff
Addresses: Department of Regional Economics, Faculty of Economics and Econometrics, Free University Amsterdam, De Boelelaan 1105, 1081 HV Amsterdam, The Netherlands. Department of Regional Economics, Faculty of Economics and Econometrics, Free University Amsterdam, De Boelelaan 1105, 1081 HV Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Abstract: The role of the city in the modern electronic age is rapidly changing. Cities are no longer closed islands of local opportunities, but are open nodal points in a global network environment. Information and Communication Technology (ICT) has lifted the traditional physical-geographical constraints which kept cities imprisoned from the early genesis of modern cities. More openness means also more actors in the global economic playing field, so that cities tend to become increasingly competitors of each other. They compete on location factors; the relative importance of these factors to enterprises and households is altered by information and communication technology. In the competitive game between cities, both changed and enforced by this shift of location factor importance, success is determined by the adjustment potential, the flexibility and resilience of several urban stakeholders. The paper analyses the causes and implications of urban path dependence and tries to offer an analytical framework through which actual developments in various cities can systematically be mapped out. The paper proceeds then - by way of a comparative contrast analysis - with an empirical investigation of two dynamic cities, Berlin and Amsterdam. Based on extensive fieldwork, an attempt is finally made to offer clear policy conclusions and recommendations for urban unemployment policy.
Keywords: cities; urban dynamics; employment policy; path-dependence; Berlin; Amsterdam.
International Journal of Technology, Policy and Management, 2001 Vol.1 No.1, pp.78-99
Published online: 18 Aug 2003 *Full-text access for editors Access for subscribers Purchase this article Comment on this article