chapter  13
17 Pages

Regions in the New Germany

In the 1980s, the paradigmatic change of the dominant economic philosophy from Keynesianism to a form of supply-side economics in Germany, together with growing financial problems and the imminent new challenges of a future European Single Market for regional economies, triggered for the first time a serious debate on alternatives to top-down economic development strategies in Germany. A bottom-up approach of regional self-help seemed to offer a lot of attractive possibilities: it could mobilize neglected local and regional economic potentials; it could perhaps be also more cost-efficient; and it could shoulder some of the responsibilities for regional development, especially if the European Single Market really were to reduce considerably the national competencies for regional development.