Friday, March 07, 2008

Geography of Failure

Ed Morrison posted a curious juxtaposition over at Brewed Fresh Daily. News of a report's heralding the benefits of globalization for the European Union is followed with two stories (here and here) about the State of Indiana's current position to leverage global economic trends. Thinking within the boundaries of Indiana is one of the reasons why the Rust Belt is falling so far behind the booming Sun Belt:

Contrast that with the situation chronicled in a book recently profiled in these pages, about a region that in many ways now trails the South. The Midwest, writes Richard Longworth in "Caught in the Middle: America's Heartland in the Age of Globalism," barely thinks of itself as a single, cohesive region, and it's done little to think strategically about how it got into the economic fix in which it now finds itself, much less work together on ways to get out of it.

The European Union is a case study of strategic regional thinking. America's New South is another. The Midwest, Rust Belt, or Industrial Heartland is an example of every state or shrinking city for itself. Indiana cannot compete with such large regions. Globalization favors agglomeration and low barriers. By itself, Indiana's attempts to "fortify its global economic strengths" will come up short.

No comments: