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Research - Globalization and World Cities, GaWC

GaWC is the leading worldwide network of researchers for understanding cities in the era of globalization. It operates through a virtual centre,, in which Loughborough geography is the home node within the network. Created by Peter Taylor at Loughborough in 1998, GaWC has grown immensely to become a unique research infrastructure and a key generator of international research agendas.


The cluster of GaWC researchers in Loughborough are an innovative and committed group who continue to maintain and develop the virtual website and network. Their success rests upon a large-scale publishing effort that disseminates the results of numerous important projects supported by UK research councils, EU institutions, international trusts and foundations, and private companies. Projects have focused upon the changing world city network and activities of financial, creative and professional service firms with field work in Amsterdam, Birmingham, Bogota, Brussels, Buenos Aires, Caracas, Cologne, Detroit, Dublin, Dusseldorf, Frankfurt, London, Los Angeles, Manchester, Mexico City, Milan, New York, Paris, Rio de Janeiro, Rotterdam, Santiago, Singapore, Sao Paulo, Shanghai, Washington, DC, and Zurich. Current research is deepening our historical understanding of city networks, extending world city network research, focussing on law and advertising in the USA, and developing ideas about polycentricity and gateways. Applied Studies @ GaWC are led by Kathryn Pain and include a Spatial Planning Unit and a Cities Monitoring UnitEuropean Cities Research @ GaWC is led by Michael Hoyler. We are also in the process of creating a Regional and Urban Governance focus.


Ed Brown takes a political economy approach to places often ‘beyond world cities’. He is extending the GaWC governance research agenda into corruption and the finance agenda into credit extension in Latin American cities.


Ann Firth is a historian who is helping develop the historical dimension at GaWC; she is the post doc researcher on the Jacobs-Wallerstein historical project.


John Harrison has recently completed his PhD on regional and urban governance with specific reference to the English North West. He has a key role to play in developing our governance agenda.


Michael Hoyler has worked on several GaWC projects (London-Frankfurt, POLYNET) and is currently part of the Jacobs-Wallerstein historical project team. He is developing research on European cities at GaWC.


Heike Jöns brings a new dimension to GaWC research in her exploration of the historical and contemporary geographies of knowledge production through academic mobilities and research networks.


Peter Taylor is the Director of GaWC and has been instrumental in developing: new research agendas for assessing inter-city relations: new methodologies (interlocking network model, connectivity measurement) of measuring contemporary globalization (the world city network); and the generic/historic nature of city-state relations.


There are also two independent researchers associated with GaWC:


Jon Cloke has researched micro-credit and corruption and is extending our financial services research into formal credit expansion in major Latin American cities.

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