What Makes Cities More Productive? Evidence on the Role of Urban Governance from 5 OECD Countries

Mardi | 2015-01-20
Sully 5 – 16h-17h20

Rudiger AHREND – Emily FARCHY – Ioannis KAPLANIS – Alexander C. LEMBCKE

This paper estimates agglomeration benefits across five OECD countries, and represents the first empirical analysis of how metropolitan governance structures might affect city productivity. The comparability of results in a multi-country setting is supported through the use of a new internationally harmonised definition of cities based on economic linkages rather than administrative boundaries. In line with the literature, the analysis confirms that city productivity tends to increase with city size but finds that cities with fragmented governance structures tend to have lower levels of productivity. This effect is mitigated by the existence of a metropolitan governance body.