Scandinavian Working Papers in Economics

Working Paper Series in Economics and Institutions of Innovation,
Royal Institute of Technology, CESIS - Centre of Excellence for Science and Innovation Studies

No 129: The Rise of the Mega-Region

Richard Florida (), Tim Gulden () and Charlotta Mellander ()
Additional contact information
Richard Florida: MPI Rotman School of Management
Tim Gulden: Center for International and Security Studies at the University of Maryland School of Public Policy
Charlotta Mellander: Prosperity Institute of Scandinavia JIBS and CESIS

Abstract: This paper uses a global dataset of nighttime light emissions to produce an objectively consistent set of mega-regions for the globe. We draw on high resolution population data to estimate the population of each of these regions. We then process the light data in combination with published estimates of national GDP to produce rough but useful estimates of the economic activity of each region. We also present estimates of technological and scientific innovation. We identify 40 mega-regions with economic output of more than $100 billion that produce 66 percent of world output and accounts for 85 percent of global innovation.

Keywords: Mega-region; Globalization; Urbanization; Nighttime lights

JEL-codes: O18; R10

30 pages, April 28, 2008

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