Saturday, July 14, 2012

Essay on Inter-City Relations

Essay on Inter-City Relations

The development of society, politics, and economy affects soundly human way of life. Our civilization caused the appearance of multiple phenomena which are now inevitable part of our life. One phenomenon is city, the mutual integration of society, demography, culture, geography, economy, politics, and other spheres of life. On the close view cities appear to be much more complex organisms that it may be expected. It is important note that city is not a place, but a process. Moreover, there are no separate cities nowadays, as all of them constitute the network of a single city. The unity of cities in a network began around 800 years ago, thus the current globalization process is only an evolution of geohistorical order.

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Understanding social inter-city relations is a challenging task, considering that cities present national urban systems. The great number of researches and analyses were carried out using multiple methods and approaches in order to investigate the relations whithin the world cities, the largest leading cities in world economy. The major hypotheses of Friedman defines three theses of world city - functional, hierarchical, and global-local theses, that are crucial within the concept of global city network. Global theory of Sassen and Global spaces of Castell are also serious studies on the subject.

In the contemporary globalization process cities play critical role, creating an alternate form of space. While geographically world is divided to nation-states forming mosaic, cities connect to each other forming network. World cities influence soundly global economy, being key nodes for it. Based on multiple studies as well as literature works on the issue of world cities, it is possible to make an analysis concerning inter-city relations. World cities present rather independent economic enteties, connecting in a network, mostly being so-called dynamic cities that form global economy.

The structure of the network of world-cities is a subject of another broad research. The main components in network formation are service firms, city governments, service-sector institutions, and nation-states. Although the global city network is different form existing forms of networks, it is still possible to define the data needed for drawing accurate description of world city network. A set of global service firms, a set of potential world cities (315), and service values are the components that may build a value matrix we need. It was also possible to identify the cities connectivity - the role in the global network. Ten cities with the highest connectivity ranks are: London, New York, Hong Kong, Paris, Tokyo, Singapore, Chicago, Milan, Los Angeles, and Madrid. London and New York are separated from other cities with major gap. These results are very useful for further analysis of the world-city network and relations within it in the context of relevant issue of globalization process.
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