The rapid growth of economic regionalism has stimulated a large and influential body of research. Many existing studies, however, place little emphasis on the political conditions that shape regionalism. Lately, the drawbacks of such an approach have drawn heightened attention, contributing to a burgeoning literature that sheds new light on how political factors guide both the formation and economic effects of regional institutions. We argue that these analyses provide key insights into the political underpinnings of regionalism. They also indicate that studies neglecting political conditions risk arriving at misleading conclusions about regionalism's causes and consequences. At the same time, however, recent research leaves various key theoretical and empirical issues unresolved, including which political factors bear most heavily on regionalism and the nature of their effects.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Sociology and Political Science
- Political Science and International Relations
- Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management