Theorising the Rise of Regionness
New Political Economy, Vol 5, No 3 (December 2000), pp. 457-473
32 Pages Posted: 21 Feb 2014
Date Written: 2000
We are witnessing a resurgence of regionalism in world politics. Drawing on the significant but rather diverse old and new theorising in the field, this article seeks to move towards a more coherent construction of a New Regionalism Theory (NRT), built around the core concept of ‘regionness’, indicating the multidimensional result of the process of regionalisation of a particular geographic area. The concept of regionness — ranging from regional space, regional complex, regional society, regional community to region-state — is outlined and suggested as a comparative analytical tool for understanding the emergence and construction of regions and the formation of relevant actors in a historical and multidimensional perspective. To some extent the five levels express a certain evolutionary logic, but there is, for sure, nothing deterministic with the rise of regionness. Furthermore, there are many regionalisms and the processes of regionalisation at different points in time provides various entry points into the globalised order for particular regions.
Keywords: region, regional integration, regionalism, European integration, comparative regionalism
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