Urban America Reconsidered: Alternatives for Governance and Policy (Hardback)David L. Imbroscio (author)
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The aftermath of Hurricane Katrina laid bare the tragedy of American cities. What the storm revealed about the social conditions in New Orleans shocked many Americans. Even more shocking is how widespread these conditions are throughout much of urban America. Plagued by ineffectual and inegalitarian governance, acute social problems such as extreme poverty, and social and economic injustice, many American cities suffer a fate similar to that of New Orleans before and after the hurricane. Gentrification and corporate redevelopment schemes merely distract from this disturbing reality.
Compounding this tragedy is a failure in urban analysis and scholarship. Little has been offered in the way of solving urban America's problems, and much of what has been proposed or practiced remains profoundly misguided, in David Imbroscio's view. In Urban America Reconsidered, he offers a timely response. He urges a reconsideration of the two reigning orthodoxies in urban studies: regime theory, which provides an understanding of governance in cities, and liberal expansionism, which advocates regional policies linking cities to surrounding suburbs. Declaring both approaches to be insufficient-and sometimes harmful-Imbroscio illuminates another path for urban America: remaking city economies via an array of local economic alternative development strategies (or LEADS). Notable LEADS include efforts to build community-based development institutions, worker-owned firms, publicly controlled businesses, and webs of interdependent entrepreneurial enterprises. Equally notable is the innovative use of urban development tools to generate indigenous, stable, and balanced growth in local economies. Urban America Reconsidered makes a strong case for the LEADS approach for constructing progressive urban regimes and addressing America's deepest urban problems.
Publisher: Cornell University Press
Number of pages: 240
Weight: 28 g
Dimensions: 229 x 152 x 20 mm
"An interesting extension and development of urban regime theory. David Imbroscio puts forth a sophisticated and cogent critique of regionalism. Urban America Reconsidered will be of value to urban studies scholars and to urban activists."-Mara Sidney, Rutgers University-Newark, author of Unfair Housing: How National Policy Shapes Local Action
"Urban America Reconsidered is rigorous, brave, provocative-and correct! This is a necessary book for anyone serious about America's urban collapse and, ultimately, about the state of America itself."-Gar Alperovitz, Lionel R. Bauman Professor of Political Economy, University of Maryland, author of America Beyond Capitalism
"David Imbroscio presents a trenchant challenge to the main theoretical perspectives on urban politics. He also supplies a new basis for localistic economic development that would encourage community and citizen participation in American cities. This is a book that not only respects rival theories but also has the spark that will generate dialogue with other theorists that its author seeks to create."-G. William Domhoff, Distinguished Research Professor in Sociology, University of California, Santa Cruz, coauthor of The Leftmost City: Power and Progressive Politics in Santa Cruz
"David Imbroscio has written an ambitious and important book. He not only tackles the major theoretical schools of thought in urban studies but also offers a thoughtful and compelling alternative. Urban America Reconsidered deserves a wide audience-not just in political science, but among all people who care about our cities and how they are governed."-James DeFilippis, Rutgers University, author of Unmaking Goliath: Community Control in the Face of Global Capital
"David Imbroscio makes a forceful and compelling argument against the metropolitan agenda of urban reformers, not from the right where such criticism has usually come in defense of the exclusionary prerogatives of local communities, but from the left, with a call for greater local power. The arguments that Imbroscio offers in Urban America Reconsidered are highly original and extremely important."-Edward G. Goetz, University of Minnesota, author of Clearing the Way: Deconcentrating the Poor in Urban America