OECD Regional Outlook 2016

Productive Regions for Inclusive Societies

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Regions and cities are where the effects of policies to promote economic growth and social inclusion are felt in day-to-day life. The OECD Regional Outlook 2016 examines the widening productivity gap across regions within countries, and the implications of these trends for the well-being of people living in different places. It discusses how structural policies, public investment and multi-level governance reforms can help boost productivity and address inclusion. Drawing on a survey of OECD countries, the Outlook  highlights country practices in regional, urban, and rural development policy that guide public investment. The Special Focus Part II on rural areas looks at different types of rural area and their productivity performance trends, and suggests that countries move towards a “Rural Policy 3.0”. The Policy Forum on Regions and Cities: Implementing Global Agendas includes chapters by many leading global organisations on how regions and cities can be instrumental in achieving the targets of agreements such as the Paris Accord and the Sustainable Development Goals.  Individual country profiles provide an overview of regional, urban and rural development policies as well as performance in terms of productivity and well-being among different regions.

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Cities and regions – Connected by water in mutual dependency

This chapter argues that cities and regions have a crucial role to play in facing existing and future challenges of managing water – whether too much, too little or too polluted. While no blue-print exists on how water challenges are to be met, inaction is certainly not an option. On the contrary, there is momentum to move from vision to action towards the implementation of the global agenda to 2030, which aims, amongst other things, to ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation to all. The chapter argues that there is room for better efficiency and inclusiveness when connecting between territorial scales and water boundaries, and across water-related policies. The OECD Principles on Water Governance provide a framework to set and implement water policies across levels of government that contribute to better lives.

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