Toward a relational economic geography

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This article calls for a new "turn" in economic geography for a relational framework that centers on actor interactions to better understand economic processes. Rejecting the notions of regional science which use space to reify categories of difference and can often be deterministic in their classification, the relational turn in economic geography prefers using geography as a perspective or lens to ground interaction in spatial context. In light of this rejection, Bathelt and Glückler break their framework for the study of economic geography into the categories of organization, evolution, interaction, and innovation. When these are viewed through a geographic lens, this framework allows the authors to make three major propositions. First, it is argued that actors and relations are situated in structures of their social and institutional relations. Second, the evolution of economic processes is path dependent and reflective of historical influence. Finally, actors have agency in which their actions may be open ended and challenge both structure and history.

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Economic analyses, Collective action, Enterprise development, Relational economic geography, Regional science, Networks, Economic geography, Ions of economic geography
Journal of Economic Geography 3(2): 117-144