Governing Metropolitan Areas: Growth and Change in a Networked Age, 2nd Edition (Paperback) book cover

Governing Metropolitan Areas

Growth and Change in a Networked Age, 2nd Edition

By David K. Hamilton


416 pages

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Interest and research on regionalism has soared in the last decade. Local governments in metropolitan areas and civic organizations are increasingly engaged in cooperative and collaborative public policy efforts to solve problems that stretch across urban centers and their surrounding suburbs. Yet there remains scant attention in textbooks to the issues that arise in trying to address metropolitan governance. Governing Metropolitan Areas describes and analyzes structure to understand the how and why of regionalism in our global age. The book covers governmental institutions and their evolution to governance, but with a continual focus on institutions. David Hamilton provides the necessary comprehensive, in-depth description and analysis of how metropolitan areas and governments within metropolitan areas developed, efforts to restructure and combine local governments, and governance within the polycentric urban region.

This second edition is a major revision to update the scholarship and current thinking on regional governance. While the text still provides background on the historical development and growth of urban areas and governments' efforts to accommodate the growth of metropolitan areas, this edition also focuses on current efforts to provide governance through cooperative and collaborative solutions. There is also now extended treatment of how regional governance outside the United States has evolved and how other countries are approaching regional governance.


"Regionalism enjoys strong support across political and ideological boundaries. This text offers one of the most compelling and insightful perspectives into what regionalism looks like in practice, the strengths and weaknesses of regionalism, and the conditions under which regionalism succeeds."

—Mark K. Cassell, Kent State University

"David Hamilton has produced a highly engaging text on metropolitan governance. Its strengths include a clear, single-authored focus, accessible reflections for senior undergraduates, graduates, and practitioners on contemporary governability challenges in our larger city-regions, and sufficient comparative reflections to challenge any false clarities in how we might govern ourselves in an increasing urban-metropolitan world."

—Patrick Smith, Simon Fraser University

"This is a competent and relevant update of the book and deserves continued use.--W. C. Johnson, independent scholar."

Summing Up: Recommended. Undergraduate, graduate, and professional collections. CHOICE

Table of Contents

1. Growth of Urban America. 2. Public Policy Issues and Regional Governance. 3. Suburbanization and Annexation. 4. Government Centralization Responses: Consolidation and Metropolitan Government. 5. The Impact of Federal and State Government Policies on Regionalism. 6. Providing Services in the Decentralized Metropolis. 7. Providing Services in Decentralized Metropolitan Areas through Intergovernmental Cooperation and Contracting. 8. The County and Regional Governance. 9. Unique Approaches to Regional Governance and Fiscal Regionalism. 10. Collaborative Regional Governance. 11. Regional Governance in Selected Metropolitan Areas in other Countries. 12. Future Directions for Regional Governance in a Global Society.

About the Author

David Hamilton is director of the MPA program at Texas Tech University. Current research interests include democracy and efficiency, patronage and human resource management, comparative regional governance, and local government reform. He is co-editor of Regional Policies for Metropolitan Livability (2008) and author of Governing Metropolitan Areas: Response to Growth and Change (1999). He has published numerous articles on patronage, human resources, and regional topics in leading journals.

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