Throw a rock out of any window these days and you’ll hit something written about regionalism, clusters, knowledge-based economy or innovation. Choosing to review any of these topics is an invitation to have your eyes burst from the strain of having to review the literature in order to choose an appropriate work to discuss. McGahey’s Regional Economic Development in Theory and Practice is in the Curmudgeon’s opinion one of the better discussions on regionalism that has been published in recent years. McGahey’s article offers important insights into current regional thinking. But it also forces the Curmudgeon to backfill the reader on a wide variety of past regionalist movements which have occurred over the last fifty-sixty years. Each movement or set of initiatives was distinctively inspired by a then in vogue perspective of why regionalism was desirable and necessary. The tale has evolved over the years, but in many ways seems to have remained in its essentials, rather constant. How current regionalism may have evolved from our historical past should shed some light into its essential message.
The awareness of regionalism has prospered greatly from its linkage and relationship to the clusters approach and cluster’s derivative approaches (innovation, knowledge-based economic development, and entrepreneur or start up).