Browsing by Subject "GEOGRAPHY"

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  • Chichorro, Filipe; Juslén, Aino; Cardoso, Pedro (2019)
    Biodiversity is shrinking rapidly, and despite our efforts only a small part of it has been assessed for extinction risk. Identifying the traits that make species vulnerable might help us to predict the status for those less known. We gathered information on the relationships between traits and extinction risk from 173 publications, across all taxa, spatial scales and biogeographical regions, in what we think it is the most comprehensive compilation to date. We aimed to identify (1) taxonomical and spatial biases, and (2) statistically robust and generalizable predictors of extinction risk through the use of meta-analyses. Vertebrates and the Palaearctic are the most studied taxon and region because of higher accumulation of data in these groups. Among the many traits that have been suggested to be predictors, only three had enough data for meta-analyses. Two of them are potentially useful in assessing risk for the lesser-known species: regardless of the taxon, species with small range and narrow habitat breadth are more vulnerable to extinction. Contrastingly, body size (the most studied trait) did not present a consistently positive or negative response. We hypothesize that the relationship between body size and extinction risk is shaped by different aspects, namely the phenomena represented by body size depending on the taxonomic group. To increase our understanding of the drivers of extinction, further studies should focus on understudied groups such as invertebrates and fungi and regions such as the tropics and expand the number of traits in comparative analyses that should avoid current biases.
  • Mattlin, Mikael; Wigell, Mikael (2016)
    Geoeconomic power and its use appear to be a crucial, albeit understudied aspect of today's international relations. Traditionally, international power has been thought of in geopolitical rather than geoeconomic terms. Indeed, ever since the famous debate about sea power and land power between Alfred Thayer Mahan and Halford MacKinder at the cusp of the twentieth century, scholars have linked geography with the pursuit of political and military power. However, the term "geoeconomics" is of a more recent origin, and also more vexing than geopolitics. The term is commonly associated with Edward Luttwak's writings in the early 1990s Luttwak (Natl Interes 20:17-24, 1990, Int Econ 7/5:18-67, 1993), although it did not spin a major scholarly discussion at the time. For Luttwak, geoeconomics denoted the successor system of interstate rivalry that emerged in the aftermath of Cold War geopolitics. As a consequence of the rise of major new economic powers, such as China, India and Brazil, there is renewed interest in the concept. Yet, an overview of the literature indicates that there seems to be no agreement on what exactly the term means. This special issue tackles the different ways in which the term geoeconomics is used, in the context of the policies pursued by major regional powers (e.g. China, Russia and Germany). How are we to understand the actions of these regional powers in contexts where economic interests, political power and geography intersect? In the introductory article, we overview the literature and summarise the main arguments of the individual papers.
  • Ghinoi, Stefano; Steiner, Bodo; Makkonen, Teemu; Hassink, Robert (2020)
    In spite of our current understanding of Smart Specialisation Strategy (S3) design and implementation, an understanding of interrelated governance practices aimed at addressing S3 governance issues is lacking. Applying a data-triangulation approach to a large peripheral Finnish region (Lapland), the analysis suggests that S3 implementation faces two key challenges: first, the development of stakeholder networks to support diversified specialization; and second, the lack of entrepreneurial discovery activity and associated differentiation of specialization. Policy solutions aimed at successful S3 implementation could focus on more targeted stakeholder engagement to mobilize resources for further diversified specialization.
  • Eskelinen, T.; Ylönen, Matti (2020)
    The contemporary world continues to suffer from a number of social problems that are global in scope but impact the Global South disproportionately. While broad and coordinated policy responses to overcome these problems exist, such policies are not shaped solely by the political will to address the problems. On the contrary, their content largely depends on how societies in general and the social problems in particular are routinely explained and conceptualized. We refer to these as explanatory tendencies or paradigms of explanation. As complex problems always have multiple root causes with long causal chains, explanations of these causes necessarily involve some assumptions about relevant causalities. Typically, the main choice in explaining international politics relates to the extent to which social phenomena should be explained by domestic institutions, decisions and events. Social science in general has been noted to have a bias toward a "nationalist" approach to explanation [Beck, 2007; Brenner, 1999; Gore, 1993; Pogge, 2002]. This means treating the state as the primary and even sufficient object of analysis, so that problems are explained by the malfunctioning institutions and misinformed policies of states. Such explanatory biases become naturalized in everyday politics and social analysis [Amin, 2004]. While this has been widely discussed as an epistemological issue, the interplay between international organizations and explanatory tendencies has received less attention. The present article addresses this gap. We argue that explanatory tendencies and biases should not be treated exclusively as an epistemological matter. They need to be accompanied by an analysis of the role of international organizations as both influenced by an explanatory tendency and upholding it. Paradigms of explanation are reflected in the priorities and relative powers of international organizations, as their very structure can reflect particular explanatory tendencies. As an example, we will use the ascent and descent of the United Nations work on the power of multinational enterprises.
  • Moisio, Sami; Rossi, Ugo (2020)
    This paper assesses the mutating role of the state in today's flourishing technology hubs in major cities and metropolitan areas across the globe through a comparative lens. Conventional wisdom associates the contemporary phenomenon of high-tech urbanism with minimum state intervention. In public as well as in scholarly debates, technology-intensive urban economies are customarily portrayed as a phenomenon whose formative creativity and ethos stems from an essentially post-political nature. As these economies emerge, thanks to the cooperative dynamism of urban societies, political governments are considered merely as coordinators of inter-actor relationships, particularly as managers or orchestrators of innovative 'business ecosystems' and 'platforms'. We, in turn, suggest that today's emergence of technology-based economies in a selected circle of major cities and metropolitan areas is an inherently political phenomenon, as it is closely linked to what we call the strategic urbanisation of the state. Looking at the trajectories of Finland and Italy during the post-recession decade of the 2010s, we disclose the state-driven selective mobilisation of urban economies as a response to the low-growth present of national political economies. In doing so, we argue that the entrepreneurialisation of selected urban locations cannot be understood without considering the qualitatively transformed roles of the local and national states. The coming together of entrepreneurialist and urbanising state strategies disclose a shift towards a start-up state whose distinctive features differ qualitatively from those of both the investment-oriented late-Keynesian entrepreneurial state and the decentralised local economic governance envisaged by today's city-innovation theorists.