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The Spatial Economy: Cities, Regions, and International Trade Paperback – September 1, 2001

ISBN-13: 978-0262561471 ISBN-10: 9780262561471

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The Spatial Economy: Cities, Regions, and International Trade + Development, Geography, and Economic Theory (Ohlin Lectures) + Geography and Trade (Gaston Eyskens Lectures)
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: The MIT Press (September 1, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9780262561471
  • ISBN-13: 978-0262561471
  • ASIN: 0262561476
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #896,574 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"A superb volume on the new economics of geography by three pioneersin the field. This lucid, elegant book is a must for any graduatecourse in urban economics." Edward L. Glaeser, Professor of Economics, Harvard University

About the Author

Masahisa Fujita is Professor of Economics at the Kyoto Institute of Economic Research, Kyoto University.

Paul Krugman is Professor of Economics and International Affairs at Princeton University and a New York Times columnist. He was awarded the Nobel Prize for Economics in 2008.

Anthony J. Venables is Professor of International Economics at the London School of Economics.

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76 of 81 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 20, 1999
Format: Hardcover
If you are considering buying this book, you will probably want to do so. If you are interested in applying regional analysis or the "new" spatial economics that they present, you will have a good starting point. The necessary background is probably be a year of Ph.D. level economic theory. Specific high points are the exposition of the Dixit-Stiglitz model of monopolistic competition and the evolution of urban systems. All new Ph.D. students will have a use for chapter 4, which is an easy-to-read discussion of monopolistic competition. Further, the book is rigorous enough to be used in academic work. I recommend it to anyone interested in regional or urban economics. It is useful to students and practicing economists alike. Its rigor makes it academic, but its ease of exposition makes it useful for those without extraordinary math backgrounds. Compared to similar books, you get a lot of value for the price.
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Stephen R. Laniel on October 29, 2008
Format: Paperback
This is the most I've enjoyed an economics book since Sam Bowles's "Microeconomics". Like Bowles's book, it offers crystal-clear writing attached to non-scary mathematics. It's less wide-ranging than Bowles's book, but the amount of amazement per page is comparable. In the case of "The Spatial Economy", the amazement comes from how much mileage they get from very simple models.

They're trying to answer some questions that lay dormant in economics for many years, namely: why do cities form where they do? How important are first-mover advantages for cities? (I.e., what would have to happen for New York to no longer be top dog?) How do national boundaries affect the distribution of industries within a given nation? How does trade liberalization (for instance, NAFTA) change that distribution? How can the same methods used to study cities help us understand international trade?

One way to start modeling cities is to assume a built-in tension in their size: as a city grows more dense, it draws more businesses to it, but also pushes some out into the suburbs. It draws them because they want to be where the customers are ("forward linkage") and also want to be where their suppliers are ("backward linkage"). It pushes them away because of land rents: the denser the city becomes, the higher the rent.

One of the most interesting parts of the book is that they don't actually model land rents at all. In essence, all of their models derive from varying assumptions about transportation costs, forward linkages, and backward linkages. From these meagre beginnings, they get quite stunning results.
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0 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Meera on April 19, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
This book provides introduction to spatial economics. But when you say spatial economics, you expect graphical explanations to the various theories which is lacking here.

This book might be good for economists but if you are urban planner and want to learn urban economics, this book is not for you.
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