OECD Territorial Reviews

English
ISSN: 
1990-0759 (online)
ISSN: 
1990-0767 (print)
http://dx.doi.org/10.1787/19900759
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This series offers analysis and policy guidance to national and subnational governments seeking to strengthen territorial development policies and governance. These reviews are part of a larger body of OECD work on regional development that addresses the territorial dimension of a range of policy challenges, including governance, innovation, urban development and rural policy. This work includes both thematic reports and reports on specific countries or regions.

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OECD Territorial Reviews: The Metropolitan Region of Rotterdam-The Hague, Netherlands

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English
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    http://oecd.metastore.ingenta.com/content/0415101e.pdf
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Author(s):
OECD
01 Feb 2016
Pages:
196
ISBN:
9789264249387 (PDF) ;9789264249370(print)
http://dx.doi.org/10.1787/9789264249387-en

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This report examines the Netherland’s new Metropolitan Region of Rotterdam-The Hague (MRDH), drawing on lessons from governance reforms in other OECD countries and identifying how the MRDH experience could benefit policy makers beyond Dutch borders. Long in search of ways to strengthen urban areas, the Dutch government has recently undertaken the development of a National Urban Agenda known as Agenda Stad, in parallel to a series of broad institutional reforms. This included abolishing the country’s traditional eight city-regions, which led Rotterdam, The Hague and 21 smaller neighbouring cities to form the Metropolitan Region of Rotterdam-The Hague (Metropoolregio Rotterdam Den Haag, or MRDH). This report analyses the emergence of the MRDH both as a geographical area that spans 23 municipalities in the southern Randstad region and as a new metropolitan authority with transport and economic development responsibilities. One of the challenges the MRDH faces is how to bring the economies of Rotterdam and The Hague closer together while generating growth and well-being. 
 

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  • Foreword and Acknowledgements

    Across the OECD, globalisation is increasingly testing the capacity of regional economies to adapt and exploit their competitive advantages, while also offering new opportunities for regional development. More and more, authorities at all levels of government are rethinking their strategies for building competitive, sustainable, inclusive urban areas. Central governments can no longer assume the full responsibility for development policies. Effective relations between different levels of government, as well as greater participation by citizens, firms, education and research institutions, and other non-state actors are required in order to improve the delivery and quality of public services.

  • Acronyms and abbreviations
  • Executive summary

    The 2014 OECD Territorial Review of the Netherlands suggested that the country could be getting more out of its largest cities. In search of ways to strengthen urban areas, the Dutch government has recently undertaken the development of a National Urban Agenda, known as Agenda Stad, in parallel to a series of broad institutional reforms. One such reform was the abolition of the eight city-regions (stadsregio), which had for decades managed a range of functions in the country’s largest urban areas. Subsequently, Rotterdam, The Hague and 21 smaller neighbouring cities decided to form the Metropolitan Region of Rotterdam-The Hague (Metropoolregio Rotterdam Den Haag, MRDH). The MRDH and Amsterdam were the only two urban areas in the country to emerge from the latest reform with their own new metropolitan governance arrangements; in all other Dutch urban areas, the responsibilities and corresponding budgets of the cityregions were transferred to provinces and municipalities.

  • Assessment and recommendations

    Findings from the 2014 OECD Territorial Review of the Netherlands suggest that the country could be getting more out of its cities and urban areas. The rich, polycentric spatial structure of the Netherlands has contributed to high levels of gross domestic product (GDP) per capita, yet Dutch cities have not benefited to the expected degree from agglomeration economies. In search of new tools and institutional responses to strengthen urban areas, the Dutch government has in recent years undertaken the development of a National Urban Agenda (Agenda Stad), in parallel to a series of broad institutional reforms. One such reform, which became effective in January 2015, was the abolition of the eight city-regions (stadsregio WGR+ regio), which had for decades managed a range of metropolitan-scale functions in the country’s largest urban areas. While different institutional configurations were envisaged to redistribute their competencies and corresponding resources, Rotterdam and The Hague joined forces with 21 smaller neighbouring cities to merge the 2 former city-regions of Rotterdam and The Hague (Stadsregio Rotterdam and Stadsgewest Haaglanden, respectively) to form the Metropolitan Region of Rotterdam-The Hague (Metropoolregio Rotterdam Den Haag, MRDH).

  • Trends, challenges and opportunities in the Metropolitan Region of Rotterdam-The Hague

    This chapter introduces the Metropolitan Region of Rotterdam-The Hague (MRDH), which corresponds to a geographic area of 23 municipalities including Rotterdam and The Hague, as well as a new metropolitan-scale body created in 2015 to manage responsibilities for transport and economic development in this area. Rotterdam and The Hague have only recently begun to consider themselves as partners in a larger metropolitan region. This chapter begins with an analysis of the dense, polycentric spatial structure of the MRDH, which reflects urban development patterns in the Netherlands as a whole. It then assesses issues of competitiveness, quality of life and governance in the MRDH area, comparing outcomes with national and international trends. Finally, it measures the extent to which the MRDH area exists as a single, functional region, based on commuting trends and inter-municipal economic interactions.

  • Policies for a more inclusive and competitive Metropolitan Region of Rotterdam-The Hague

    This chapter explores the role of public policies in facilitating greater economic integration within the Metropolitan Region of Rotterdam-The Hague (MRDH) as a means of boosting growth and well-being. It first assesses how past policies in transport, spatial planning, economic development and housing have contributed – or, in many cases, inhibited – greater functional integration in the MRDH area and, by extension, the realisation of expected agglomeration benefits. It then proposes a series of strategies to mobilise the two main tools and competencies of the new MRDH body, economic development and transport, towards a more cohesive region. The chapter concludes with a series of considerations with respect to potential changes to the MRDH co-operative structure over the long term.

  • Metropolitan governance in the Metropolitan Region of Rotterdam-The Hague and in the OECD

    This chapter explores the mechanics of governance in the Metropolitan Region of Rotterdam-The Hague (MRDH). It first provides an overview of the key features of the MRDH body against the backdrop of recent metropolitan governance reforms across the OECD. It then explores ways to enhance the effectiveness of the MRDH in the short term and in the long term. Finally, the chapter places the MRDH initiative in the broader context of the Dutch National Urban Agenda as a renewed effort to strengthen urban areas.

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