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OECD Regional Outlook 2014

Regions and Cities: Where Policies and People Meet

image of OECD Regional Outlook 2014

Regions and cities are on the front lines of many challenges faced by OECD countries today, from education and jobs to health care and quality of life. Getting regions and cities “right”, adapting policies to the specificities of where people live and work,  is vital to improving citizens’ well-being. This second edition of the OECD Regional Outlook aims to help countries do just that. Part I describes the main trends and challenges today. Part II has a special focus on cities, looking at public investment, urban framework policies, and rural-urban issues. Part III presents a Policy Forum on the future of cities, with five contributions from distinguished authors and policy makers. Part IV offers profiles of regional development in all 34 OECD countries.

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Editorial

This issue of the Regional Outlook has a special focus on cities. And for a good reason: in OECD countries, two out of three people live in cities with populations of 50 000 and above. This share reaches 90% for a country such as Korea. And nearly half of OECD residents live in cities of 500 000 or more. At global level, the trend is even stronger: over half of the world’s population now lives in urban areas, and the United Nations estimates the global urbanisation rate will reach 60% by 2030 and 70% by 2050.

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