HomePost-neo-classical perspectives on economic development: Emerging global cities and varieties of capitalism theorization

HomePost-neo-classical perspectives on economic development: Emerging global cities and varieties of capitalism theorization

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Published on Monday, May 28, 2018


This topical issue of Open Economics invites submissions that explore both qualitatively and quantitatively how various cities have developed into global hubs of economic activity both historically and contemporaneously. The theoretical and methodological focus of this issue is the application of comparative methods for the purpose of analyzing economic systems in terms that go beyond neo-classical assumptions of economic theory found in conventional macro and micro economics. This also connects to the scholarly discourse on the varieties of capitalism or modernity as a perspective expected to be instructive for considering the preconditions for and effects of the rise of global financial and economic centers, such as London, New York and Hong Kong historically and Singapore, Tokyo and Shanghai more recently.



Capitalism can be approached as an abstract system that has a structuring influence on economic, social and cultural forms in the modern period, as it creates complex relations and interdependencies between different geographical sites and regions (Athanassakis, 2008, p. 10). In this respect, the reconsideration of capitalism in relation to cities that epitomize it can help examine the geographic dimension of capitalism as a process of economic development that has historically been unevenly distributed (Davis, & Turpin, 2015, p. 9).

In other words, it can be argued that capitalism is a multi-dimensional phenomenon that introduces a historical rupture in economic, social, and cultural structures (Kiss, 2011, pp. xvii-xix). Capitalism represents a system of spatial relations self-referentially governing the functioning of economic, social and cultural activities (Flusser, 1992, pp. 9-10). Thus, it is possible to trace in spatial configurations the manner in which relations between the economic, social and cultural spheres have been formed (Hüppe, 2013, p. 9).

This approach follows Kracauer’s conception that the operation of capitalism can be diagnosed on the basis of various aspects of urban life, such as luxury in global cities (Kracauer, 1995, p. 285). From this perspective, capitalism belongs as much to the theory of ideas as much as it does to the history of modernity (Rohbeck, 2005, p. 187). Thus, it is possible to concur with Weber’s (1922) position that capitalism is both an economic and a social and cultural phenomenon that can take multiple historically and spatially specific forms, such as imperial capitalism (Whimster, 2015, p. 2). Therefore, this special issue of Open Economics will comparatively explore the role that modern capitalism has played in the transformation of spatial relations (Wallerstein, 1976, p. 273).

Accordingly, the development of capitalism can have alternative explanations, such as in relation to cities that have played key roles in its emergence in its modern form at different historical periods, as Sombart (1922) would argue (Grundmann, & Stehr, 2001, p. 257). While London epitomizes the transition to the imperial, industrial or colonial capitalism with the global expansion of the economic relations of the British empire, Paris, as a historical capital of fashion, consumption and culture, represents an alternative type of capitalist relations that demand a reconsideration of modernity (Benjamin, 1982, p. 479). In this respect, the rise of Asian mega-cities, such as Shanghai, can be treated as indicators of the ascendancy of the non-Western varieties of capitalism that demand theoretical and empirical investigation (Marcuse & Van, 2008).

Therefore, this topical issue of Open Economics will explore post-neo-classical perspectives on economic development in relation to emerging global cities, such as in Asia, and varieties of capitalism theorization. Thus, this special issue seeks to clarify the role that contemporary and historical world cities, such as Shanghai, London and Paris, have played in the emergence of different configurations of capitalism revolving around particular urban centers.

Submission guidelines

The language of publication is English. To submit to this Topical Issue, please use Open Economics’ Editorial Manager system: www.editorialmanager.com/economics

Please remember about choosing correctArticle Type – TI: Emerging Global Cities and Varieties of Capitalism Theorization to ensure that it will be processed with the highest priority.

The deadline for submissions is September 30, 2018.

Articles published in the 2018 volume of Open Economics are free of all Article Processing Charges.

About the "Open Economics"

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Authors of Open Economics enjoy the following benefits:

  • no article submission and article processing charges (APCs) in 2018 and 2019
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  • Prof. Friedrich Schneider,  University Linz, Austria
  • Johannes Kepler University Linz, Austria

Managing Editor

More details available on our website: https://www.degruyter.com/view/j/openec


  • Sunday, September 30, 2018


  • economic theory, urban economics, economics and society, economics and culture, varieties of modernity, varieties of capitalism, economic history


  • Konrad Sarzyński
    courriel : konrad [dot] sarzynski [at] degruyteropen [dot] com

Information source

  • Konrad Sarzyński
    courriel : konrad [dot] sarzynski [at] degruyteropen [dot] com


CC0-1.0 This announcement is licensed under the terms of Creative Commons CC0 1.0 Universal.

To cite this announcement

« Post-neo-classical perspectives on economic development: Emerging global cities and varieties of capitalism theorization », Call for papers, Calenda, Published on Monday, May 28, 2018, https://calenda.org/441863

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