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Growth Machine

  • By: Thomas Chapman
  • In: Encyclopedia of Geography
  • Edited by: Barney Warf
  • Subject:General Geography, Earth & Environmental Science

Growth machine politics suggests that it is the local business elites who are the primary actors in sustaining an image of a city or a region based on a transformational growth ethic. These elites, along with politicians, local media, and utilities, mobilize both to pursue individual economic goals and advocate a viewpoint that growth (at any cost) benefits everyone in the community. This growth ethic seeps into all aspects of community life, including the political system, the agenda for economic development, and the social relations that contribute to local culture. Any issue that deviates from this growth ethic is automatically seen as a potential threat to rents and capital mobility or its exchange value. The rhetoric of these growth machine elites, therefore, tends to revolve ...

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