Varieties of Capital Cities: The Competitiveness Challenge for Secondary Capitals

Kaufmann, David (2018). Varieties of Capital Cities: The Competitiveness Challenge for Secondary Capitals. Cities series. Cheltenham: Edward Elgar Publ.

Text (Open Access Material (Introduction and References))
Varieties of Capital Cities 2018 Kaufmann.pdf - Published Version
Available under License Publisher holds Copyright.

Download (712kB) | Preview

The political and symbolic centrality of capital cities has been challenged by increasing economic globalization. This is especially true of secondary capital cities; capital cities which, while being the seat of national political power, are not the primary economic city of their nation state. David Kaufmann examines the unique challenges that these cities face entering globalized, inter-urban competition while not possessing a competitive political economy.

Varieties of Capital Cities offers empirically rich case studies of four secondary capital cities: Bern, Ottawa, The Hague, and Washington, DC. Analysed with an innovative research framework, this book shows through its clearly structured analysis, that while the pressures facing these cities are the same, the mechanisms they employ to cope with them are very different. They have formulated a wide variety of policies to supplement their capital function with economically promising profiles, even though they cannot escape their destinies as government cities.

This book is an impressive contribution to an area of study largely neglected by urban studies, political science, and economic geography. With vital lessons for urban policy makers, the interested practitioner will find a pool of inspiration for their urban strategies. Students and scholars of these subjects will find this book interesting, and will also find it invaluable as a lesson for how to develop and execute comparative case studies.

Item Type:

Book (Monograph)


11 Centers of Competence > Center of Comptetence for Public Management (KPM)

UniBE Contributor:

Kaufmann, David


300 Social sciences, sociology & anthropology > 320 Political science
300 Social sciences, sociology & anthropology > 330 Economics
300 Social sciences, sociology & anthropology > 350 Public administration & military science
700 Arts > 710 Landscaping & area planning




Cities series


Edward Elgar Publ.




David Christen

Date Deposited:

29 Oct 2018 11:58

Last Modified:

26 Oct 2019 00:09

Uncontrolled Keywords:

capital cities, locational policies, urban governance, Bern, Ottawa, The Hague, Washington, D.C.




Actions (login required)

Edit item Edit item
Provide Feedback