Peter Sunley

Peter Sunley
University of Southampton · Department of Geography and Environment

PhD

About

122
Publications
37,173
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10,285
Citations
Citations since 2017
37 Research Items
4778 Citations
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20172018201920202021202220230200400600800
20172018201920202021202220230200400600800
20172018201920202021202220230200400600800

Publications

Publications (122)
Article
Full-text available
Our focus in this paper is on a somewhat curious feature of evolutionary economic geography, namely that although concerned with evolution – with processes of historical change and transformation – evolutionary economic geography seems not to take history as seriously as it would be expected to do. We argue that evolutionary economic geography is i...
Book
This book aims to understand the predicaments of ‘left behind places’ and the scale of the policy challenge of ‘levelling up’ their economic prosperity. Drawing out lessons of wider international significance, it examines how places (cities, towns and localities) have grown apart over recent decades amidst deindustrialisation, post-industrial trans...
Article
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The UK’s industrial strategy, with local variants, aims to support manufacturing in ‘traditional industrial regions’ (TIRs). Using novel data for advanced manufacturing (AM) industries over several decades, we examine long-term changes in their geography by regions and local authority districts. These industries have shifted away from large urban r...
Article
Full-text available
The ongoing Covid-19 crisis and recession represent one of the biggest shocks to the UK manufacturing ecosystem yet, and comes at a time when the ecosystem was already in a worrying situation after decades of deindustrialisation, a decade of austerity and an impending ‘Brexit’. The effects of this shock will also be unevenly felt due to the geograp...
Article
Peter Sunley from the University of Southampton investigates the potential of advanced manufacturing for spatial rebalancing in this fascinating economic geography research focus
Chapter
In our turbulent and uncertain economic age, it is not hard to understand the appeal of resilience, a term invoked to describe how an entity or system responds to shocks and disturbances. Although the concept has been used for some time in ecology and psychology, it is now invoked in diverse contexts, both as a perceived (and typically positive) at...
Article
The UK’s economy is one of the most regionally imbalanced in Europe. The government’s recent industrial strategy discusses various means of addressing this, one of which is the strengthening of existing clusters. Using plant-level indices of spatial proximity derived from postcode district data, this article investigates the extent of spatial conce...
Article
Social enterprises (SEs) are commercial ventures run for the benefit of various stakeholders (rather than shareholders) that attempt to leverage resources (ideally through trading, but also through grants, loans, and donations in kind) to achieve social, environmental, or community‐based ends. As SEs have grown in significance throughout the world,...
Article
Recent research has argued that human capital has become the key driver of city growth and that there is a widening divergence between high and low-skill cities. This skilled city view includes several stylised propositions. The first is that more skills and human capital generate stronger economic growth; the second is that already skilled cities...
Article
Across OECD countries productivity growth has slowed, not just in recent years but over the past four decades: the so-­‐called productivity puzzle. This paper examines the differing productivity growth paths of some 85 British cities since the beginning of the 1970s, and explores how far these paths reflect differences across cities in the pace and...
Article
Structural change is now widely considered to be an important aspect of national economic growth. The issue is not only relevant at the macro-economic level, but also has a direct bearing on the growth of regions and cities. In this article, we examine the relationship between structural transformation and economic (output) growth across British ci...
Chapter
In economic terms, 1998 was a hard year in the Scottish Borders. The long decline in the region's woolen textile industry, due in large part to increasing foreign competition, was compounded by the closure of electronic components plants in response to over‐capacity in world markets. The region has lost 3,000 manufacturing jobs in three years, and...
Article
RESUMO Os economistas, ao que parece, estão descobrindo a geografia. Ao longo da última década, surgiram uma "nova teoria do comércio" e uma "nova economia da vantagem concorrencial" que, entre outras coisas, atribuem uma importância fundamental ao papel que a geografia interna de uma nação pode desempenhar na determinação do desempenho comercial...
Article
Full-text available
According to Moretti (2013), deindustrialisation has been responsible for a ‘great divergence’ between cities that have moved to become centres of innovation and ideas, and those that have continued to produce material goods. Other authors however, place more emphasis on trends in specialisation and differences in productive bases as the driving fo...
Article
Martin R., Sunley P., Gardiner B. and Tyler P. How regions react to recessions: resilience and the role of economic structure, Regional Studies. This paper examines how employment in the major UK regions has reacted to the four major recessions of the last 40 years, namely 1974–76, 1979–83, 1990–93 and 2008–10. The notions of resistance and recover...
Article
Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to argue that neoinstitutional theory can provide insights into the conflicts between social ends and economic means within social enterprises (SEs). Tensions between these differing institutional logics may be seen as a manifestation of ambiguity and incoherence in an organizational field that is, despite man...
Article
Pinch S. and Sunley P. Do urban social enterprises benefit from agglomeration? Evidence from four UK cities, Regional Studies. This paper examines the relevance of clustering theory for an understanding of the location of social enterprises (SEs). This is accomplished through an analysis of the extent to which managers of SEs in four major UK citie...
Article
Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to argue that neoinstitutional theory can provide insights into the conflicts between social ends and economic means within social enterprises (SEs). Tensions between these differing institutional logics may be seen as a manifestation of ambiguity and incoherence in an organizational field that is, despite man...
Article
Over the past few years a new buzzword has entered academic, political and public discourse: the notion of resilience, a term invoked to describe how an entity or system responds to shocks and disturbances. Although the concept has been used for some time in ecology and psychology, it is now invoked in diverse contexts, both as a perceived (and typ...
Article
Martin R. and Sunley P. Towards a developmental turn in evolutionary economic geography?, Regional Studies. Over the past couple of decades or so there have been increasing moves within evolutionary theory to move beyond the neo-Darwinian principles of variety, selection and retention, and to incorporate development. This has led to a richer palett...
Article
Despite the rapid growth of interest in social enterprises (SEs) and the intense controversies over their merits in addressing pressing social and economic issues, there has been surprisingly little attention given to explicit theorization of how the markets for their goods and services are constructed and maintained. Towards this end this paper ex...
Article
The financial crisis and consequential recession that brought the UK’s long economic boom of 1992–2008 to a dramatic end have generated considerable debate about the need to ‘rebalance’ the economy, both sectorally and spatially. In this article, we examine the scale and nature of imbalance in the British economy. We first examine the stylized fact...
Article
Purpose This paper aims to examine the extent to which urban social enterprises (SEs) have diversified their funding sources and shifted towards loans and development finance in recent years. The paper seeks to consider the underlying reasons for a limited demand for loans by comparing two theoretical perspectives on SE development. The concept of...
Article
Introduction: Engaged Pluralism?Geographical Economics: A New Trading Space?An Evolutionary ExchangeConclusions: Conversations and Critical PluralismReferences
Article
Over the past two decades, the notion of ‘emergence’ has attracted increasing attention and controversy across the social science, including economics. Within this context, as economic geographers, our concern in this paper is with the usefulness of the idea of emergence for studying the economic landscape and its evolution. The paper considers in...
Article
Full-text available
Martin R. and Sunley P. Conceptualizing cluster evolution: beyond the life cycle model?, Regional Studies. Although the literature on the evolution of industrial clusters is not vast, a preferred approach has already become evident based around the idea of a cluster 'life cycle'. This approach has several limitations. This paper explores a differen...
Article
Social enterprise (SE) has attracted increasing attention from policymakers, practitioners and academics over recent years and it has often been argued that there is a strong geographical dimension to social enterprise growth. However, a lack of reliable and extensive quantitative data about these organisations has prevented any rigorous analysis o...
Article
This paper considers the relations between practice, knowledge and context in design consultancies. It uses a case study of design consultancies in London based on in-depth interviews with designers working in design agencies in the city. The paper argues that the relations between design knowledge and context have been conceived in two ways. The f...
Chapter
This chapter offers a critique of the claim that clustering is a key source of competitive advantage both for the firms involved and for the region where a cluster is located. The chapter examines the conceptual and empirical foundations for this argument. It outlines the key elements in Porter's theory of 'clusters as drivers of competitiveness'....
Book
Placing the discipline in vivid historical and contemporary context, The SAGE Handbook of Economic Geography is a timely, essential work for graduates, researchers and academics in economic geography.
Article
Full-text available
Growing design? Challenges and constraints facing design consultancies in three English city-regions, Regional Studies. There is some debate as to whether creative industries can thrive in second-tier industrial city-regions, as well as in leading global cities. This paper uses the results of firm interviews with design consultancies to examine the...
Article
This paper examines the relevance of causal mapping – essentially a form of visual aid to enhance our understanding of the thoughts of an individual, group or organisation – as a means of analysing innovation and creativity within English design agencies. Focussing upon successful design contracts in three selected case studies, the discussion cons...
Article
Essentially, there are two ways that formal abstract models like those in new economic geography (NEG) can be used for policy analysis. First, formal models can be manipulated to draw out potential ‘policy implications’. Second, given these theoretically derived implications, such models can be used to analyse specific policy questions. In recent y...
Article
This project examines the role of venture capitalists (VCs) as disseminators of knowledge in the cluster of high-technology businesses that have spun off from research undertaken at the University of Southampton UK. The analysis was inspired by work of Zook on the Internet industry in the San Francisco Bay Area of the US. This research suggested th...
Article
Relational approaches in economic geography have grown in popularity and influence, but have not been critically evaluated or discussed. This article argues that poststructural and network-based versions of relational economic geography undoubtedly open up new research issues and provide tools for certain purposes, but questions whether they provid...
Article
In economics, interest has revived in economic growth, especially in long-term convergence in per capita incomes and output between countries. This mainly empirical debate has promoted the development of endogenous growth theory, which seeks to move beyond conventional neoclassical theory by treating as endogenous those factors—particularly technol...
Article
This article addresses the relatively neglected issue of variations in the degree of innovation and creativity within cultural production systems, paying particular attention to the design consultancy industry. It argues that design is a business-facing type of creative industry that differs in important ways from other types of cultural industries...
Article
Although there is a growing body of research into the cultural and creative industries, little work has focused specifically upon on the geography of design and its role in regional economies. The relative neglect of the geography of the UK design industry is surprising given recent assertions about the sector's role in national economic competitiv...
Article
This book is the first comprehensive and authoritative analysis of the New Deal and examines how far the programme has succeeded in responding to the diversity of conditions in local labour markets across the UK. Argues that profound differences in local labour market conditions have exerted a telling influence on the New Deal's achievements. Inclu...
Chapter
Introduction:Employability and Local ContextLow Employability in Buoyant Labour MarketsNew Deals in Big Cities: Job Search and High VolumesExpectation Gaps and Job QualityWorkfare Recycling in Depressed Local Labour MarketsMoves to InactivityConclusions
Chapter
IntroductionThe Unemployment ProblemThe Geographies of WorklessnessThe Policy Challenge
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Introducing Gatekeepers' TalesVariations in Job Opportunities and RecruitmentA Pool of ?Cheap Labour??The Role of the Job SubsidyTraining Provision under the NDYPA Typology of Employer ParticipationConclusions
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Half TitleTitleCopyrightContentsSeries Editors' PrefacePrefaceTablesFigures
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Local Flexibility and the New Deal for Young PeoplePartnership-Building and Co-ordinationPolicy Learning and AdaptationInnovation and ExperimentationResource TargetingWork-First Flexibility?Conclusions
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Introduction:Residual Pockets and the Geography of New DealMapping New Deal OutcomesLocal Labour Market FlowsLocal Disparities in Other New DealsConclusions Appendix
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Reforming Welfare and Redrawing ResponsibilityActivating Labour Market PolicyIntroducing the New DealsInadmissible Evidence? Geography and the New DealAims and Approach
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Article
Full-text available
Thus far, most of the work towards the construction of an evolutionary economic geography has drawn upon a particular version of evolutionary economics, namely the Nelson-Winter framework, which blends Darwinian concepts and metaphors (especially variety, selection, novelty and inheritance) and elements of a behavioural theory of the firm. Much les...
Article
Criticisms of Spatial Divisions of Labour have argued that the model ultimately dissolves into empirical particularities so that its theoretical tenets and context have been neglected. This paper attempts to draw out these premises by comparing Spatial Divisions of Labour with rational choice Marxism. Rational choice Marxism has aimed to provide mi...
Article
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In recent years, economic geographers have seized on the concepts of 'path dependence' and 'lock-in' as key ingredients in constructing an evolutionary approach to their subject. However, they have tended to invoke these notions without proper examination of the ongoing discussion and debate devoted to them within evolutionary economics and elsewhe...
Article
Full-text available
The issue of ‘equity gaps’ has loomed large in recent discussions of enterprise formation and development, both in the United Kingdom and in Germany. One particularly intriguing, but highly elusive, aspect of this issue is the question of whether equity gaps have a regional dimension: are certain regions at a systematic disadvantage with respect to...
Article
Sunley P., Klagge B., Berndt C. and Martin R. (2005) Venture capital programmes in the UK and Germany: in what sense regional policies?, Regional Studies 39 , 255-273. The paper considers how far and in what ways venture capital policies in the UK and Germany have been constructed as regional policy interventions. It begins by explaining two justif...
Article
The switch in Britain's pension policy towards private funded schemes and a liberal style of state regulation have exposed variations in individuals’ ability and willingness to undertake pensions saving. This paper focuses on the patterns of exclusion and the geographies of pension consumption created by this reform. It argues that there are new pa...
Article
Full-text available
Over the past decade, there has been growing interest in local industrial agglomeration and specialization, not only by economic geographers but also by economists and by policy-makers. Of the many ideas and concepts to have emerged from this new-found focus, Michael Porter's work on 'clusters' has proved by far the most influential. His 'cluster t...
Article
Over the past decade, there has been growing interest in local industrial agglomeration and specialization, not only by economic geographers but also by economists and by policy-makers. Of the many ideas and concepts to have emerged from this new-found focus, Michael Porter's work on clusters has proved by far the most influential. His cluster theo...
Article
In recent years, following the lead of the US, several OECD countries have introduced ‘workfare’ policies that link receipt of unemployment and related social benefits to compulsory participation on state-administered work and training schemes. The UK’s New Deal (Welfare-to-Work) for Young People is one of the largest and most developed of these wo...
Article
Full-text available
The move towards workfare and active labour-market policies is often alleged to be closely associated with the decentralisation and localisation of welfare delivery and agencies. In the United Kingdom, the New Deal for the young unemployed was designed to introduce local flexibility and discretion in delivery to mainstream labour-market policy. We...
Article
Full-text available
Over the past 25 years, the USA has pioneered a new technological revolution, based on large numbers of new small enterprises, financed by a dynamic venture (risk) capital market. The European Union, meanwhile, has lagged behind in this sector of economic activity, and compared to the US innovative small and medium enterprises appear to find it mor...

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