It has been pointed out in the previous chapter that the most fundamental condition for extensive and rapid diffusion of world-cultural models and principles is the prevalence of theoretical knowledge which creates cultural linkages amongst distinct and disconnected social entities (Strang and Meyer 1993). The sciences constantly analyse social reality and produce interpretations and social imaginaries on the nature and coherence of social life. Some of these scientific interpretations gain broader political and cultural significance. They are taken up by influential political actors, and often they are even institutionalized as standard knowledge in official political programmes. Hence, a macro-phenomenological institutional analysis which aims at reconstructing the increasing cultural significance of regions and regional tiers of government in contemporary times must start with a reconstruction of the scientific discourse and the broader theoretical models which fundamentally shape spatial perceptions and conceptions on the role of regions in human development. This requires more than simply exploring the interests and ideas of powerful actors which promote certain ‘political ideas’ or ‘policy paradigms’ (cf. Blyth 2002); it also involves the reconstruction of larger conceptual shifts in intellectual discourses beyond and across concrete interest constellations. For, as has been shown above, prevailing interpretations and conceptions of reality in everyday life are largely mediated through scientific discourse – particularly in contemporary times (Foucault 1965; Stehr 1994; Drori et al. 2003).