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Publié le 07/06/2024

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« Territorial dynamics, cooperation and tensions in globalization New York City The keyword in the theme of the chapter is obviously the word globalization.

Indeed, as we all know, globalization is not only a keyword but also and above all a key concept that must be mastered. 0 – GLOBALIZATION : A KEY CONCEPT ➔ at first a simple definition Old and still ongoing process, globalization is first and foremost the linking of the different parts of the world. This linking is the result of the acceleration of exchanges made possible by the transportation and telecommunication revolution in the context of the international free-trade. Globalization is producing a global space more and more integrated and interdependent called “world-system” by the French geographer Olivier Dollfus. Beyond this definition we must not forget that globalization has important implications because it transforms territories and societies and therefore raises many debates. ➔ the historical depth of an old and still ongoing process The first thing we must have in mind after this definition is that globalization is a geo-historical process closely correlated with the economy. The geographer Laurent Carroué insists on the fact that globalization is linked to the birth and rise of capitalism. This geo-historical process can be divided in three main phases : 1) the phase of the “Merchant capitalism” since the Great Discoveries which, in the 16th century, connected the Old Europe to the New World. The great French historian Fernand Braudel defined the concept of “world-economy” in his work upon the trade in the Mediterranean sea in the 16th century. 2) the phase of the “Industrial capitalism” since the First Industrial Revolution which started at the end of the 18th century in the UK and led to the creation of the great colonial empires of the contemporary period. 3) and finally the phase of the “Financial capitalism”, since the 1980’s, promoted by the US with the financial globalization under Ronald Reagan’s period of office (1981-1989). The neoliberalism of Reagan was coming from his influential economic advisor Milton Friedman “in this present crises, government is not the solution to our problem, government is the problem”. During the 1980’s, this neoliberalism was also applied by Margaret Thatcher in the UK. We must notice that the end of the 20th century is very important to understand the evolution of globalization. During these years, the interdependence of the world has increased at different levels: ➢ at the geoeconomic level: China opened itself to the world and to capitalism in 1978 with Deng Xiao Ping and a few years later the Soviet Socialist model collapsed in 1991. ➢ at the geopolitical level: end of the Cold war and the end of the bipolar World in 1991 after the fall of the USSR (Union of the Soviet Socialist Republics). ➢ at the geocultural level: the “consumer society” produced by capitalism, defined and criticized by Jean Baudrillard in 1970, can then become the universal model with the fall of socialism. ➢ at the geo-environmental level: the notion of “sustainable development” put forward by Gro Harlem Bruntland at the UN in 1987 is more and more integrated after the Rio Earth Summit in 1992, despite some difficulties. Then we must understand the role of New York City in this globalization. The tittle tells us that NYC is a global city but before being a global city, NYC is at first a metropolis. 1 – NEW YORK CITY: AT FIRST A METROPOLIS To fully understand what a metropolis is we must have in mind a few definitions in the urban vocabulary that marked the different steps from a simple city to a metropolis. This vocabulary is in fact the vocabulary of the urban sprawl. ➢ When a city is growing with it suburbs it becomes an agglomeration or an urban pole. ➢ When urbanization continues beyond the agglomeration we have a periurban area.

The agglomeration and its periurban area produce an urban area. ➢ When some agglomerations or some urban areas by dint of expanding finally meet we have a conurbation. Ex: the “Randstad Holland” in the Netherlands (Amsterdam-Rotterdam-La Haye) or the French conurbation Lille-Roubaix-Tourcoing. ➢ When some agglomerations or some urban areas have some important command functions and exert a strong influence over their territories they become metropolises. The influence of a metropolis is exercised in various fields. In the economic field in the cultural field in the financial field A metropolis and its influence … in the technological field in the political field According to the level of influence we can have regional, national or international metropolises and of course NYC is an international metropolis with a very strong worldwide influence. Moreover NYC is also in the heart of a very influential area, the US Northeast megalopolis. 2 – A METROPOLIS IN THE HEART OF THE US MEGALOPOLIS One of the most important characteristics of New York is that the city is a part of the megalopolis defined by the French geographer Jean Gottmann in 1961. Gottmann used the word “megalopolis” from the Greek “megalos”, big and “polis”, city to define the huge urbanized space of the East coast of the US. In this megalopolis we have, from North to South: Boston, New York, Philadelphia, Baltimore and Washington DC (for District of Columbia). This megalopolis is also nicknamed “BosWash” (from Boston to Washington). As a reminder the geographers have defined three great megalopolises in the world: ➢ The US Northeast megalopolis also called the Northern Megalopolis, the first to be identified with the creation of the concept by Jean Gottmann in 1961. ➢ The Japanese megalopolis with Tokyo, Nagoya and Osaka also called the “Tokaido Corridor” (Tokaido is the name of the main communication channel crossing this space). ➢ The European megalopolis, also called the “West European backbone” by the French geographer Roger Brunet, from Liverpool to Milan including the German Ruhr. It is worth noting that other megalopolises will probably appear very soon : - between Los Angeles and San Francisco, - between Rio de Janeiro and Buenos Aires, - or in China around Hong-Kong and Schenzen. In front of these megalopolises the French geographer Olivier Dollfus created the concept of the “Archipel mégalopolitain mondial” (global megalopolitain archipelago) to explain the very important links between the three megalopolises exchanging many flows and being in the heart of globalization. In this obvious connection between globalization and the urban phenomenon one last concept was created in 1991 by the sociologist Saskia Sassen: the “global city concept”. 3 – AND MORE THAN A METROPOLIS, A “GLOBAL CITY” When Saskia Sassen wrote in 1991 her famous book “The Global city”, New York was the first example studied and quoted on the cover of the book, the two others were London and Tokyo. The concept of “Global city” is a very important concept in globalization. Saskia Sassen choose seven precise elements to recognize and define a “Global city”: ➢ It’s a very populous city ➢ which has a leading role in the world economy ➢ which concentrates strategic and command activities ➢ which has a highly-qualified population ➢ which has a great accessibility ➢ which is a privileged place for innovation and cultural creation ➢ which has a multi-ethnic population. These 7 points can be reduced to 5 if we are looking at the population as one point instead of three: the population must be numerous, highly qualified and multi-ethnic. A tool was created to measure the worldwide influence and the attractiveness of these Global cities, the Global Power City Index (GPCI) in which we have a focus on six fields: ➢ economy ➢ research and development (RD) ➢ cultural interaction ➢ livability ➢ environment ➢ and accessibility The 2020 GPCI ranking showed: 1) London 2) NYC 3) Tokyo 4) Paris New York City, a global city A – A NUMEROUS, HIGHLY QUALIFIED AND MULTI-ETHNIC POPULATION 1) A NUMEROUS AND HIGHLY QUALIFIED POPULATION New York City has 8.3 million inhabitants while the New York metropolitan area reached 23 million among the 52 million of the Megalopolis. Of course all the New Yorkers are not highly qualified which is not the point to be regarded as a “Global City”, it’s important that a part of the population is highly qualified. Indeed New York City attracts the best students and the best graduates of the world, in NYC the effect is a “brain gain” while for the other countries it’s a “brain drain”. The very prestigious “Ivy League” brings together the best private universities of the East coast which are also among the best universities of the world. In NYC we have Columbia University, not very far we have Princeton and Yale and of course Harvard the most famous near Boston. 2) A MULTI-ETHNIC POPULATION Since the beginning of its history and because of that same history, New York City was a cosmopolitan city (see “Some elements of the NYC history). Discovered by an Italian explorer for a French king, populated at first by Dutch colonists, later by English, French, Irish, black slaves, former.... »


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