The uneven development of the various regions in France is in evidence for every one of us. However, what we know about it today poses more problems than it solves. Like all the inequalities which go hand in hand with general economic growth, whether they be reduced or increased by this growth, it has been the subject of much less work, relative to other economic phenomena, both theoretically and empirically. Modern societies, the nation states, have all had and still have, whatever their regime, a tendency to force the unequal distribution of the fruits of growth out of the national conscience. As for the ‘National Developers’, faced today with the practical problem of re-balancing regions, they have to cope with problems for the solution of which they do not have an operational theoretical grasp (how the regional inequality comes about and works) or even a definite analysis of the inequality phenomenon (what is regional inequality? What are its significant criteria?). They don’t even have an exhaustive measure of the most basic inequalities at their disposal.
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- The Uneven Growth of Regional Incomes in France from 1840 to 1970
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