Forms of Proximity, Local Governance and the Dynamics of Local Economic Spaces: The Case of Industrial Conversion Processes


Starting from an approach that mobilizes a plural definition of proximity – institutional, organizational and geographical – in the aim of endogenizing the space in economic analysis, this article seeks to understand the dynamics of local economic spaces through a re‐reading of the concept of local governance. Thus, it stresses the importance of institutional compromise‐building processes in explaining the trajectories and the diversity of spatialized forms of economic coordination, and it tackles these by giving an operational definition to the concept of local governance. More precisely, it considers the mechanisms that explain the dynamics of local governance through the distinction between endogenous and exogenous dynamics, a distinction that accounts for the linkages between local governance and macro‐economic regulation. Then, in the second part, these theoretical and methodological principles are tested in an analysis of the evolution of local governance in relation to the process of industrial conversion in the aerospace‐defence industrial centre located in the Bordeaux conurbation.