Chapter

The Regional Economies of Scotland

David Newlands

in The Transformation of Scotland

Published by Edinburgh University Press

Published in print February 2005 | ISBN: 9780748614325
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780748653348 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3366/edinburgh/9780748614325.003.0006
The Regional Economies of Scotland

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This chapter is concerned with the evolving relationship between the Scottish economy and its constituent regions over the course of the twentieth century. It begins by considering the mechanisms by which regional economies prosper or stagnate. This prompts a series of questions. Have regional economic disparities in Scotland narrowed? Have regional economies become less distinctive? To what extent has the issue of regional disparities within Scotland been recognised and acted upon by public policy makers? What, in turn, has been the impact of policy upon the regional economies of Scotland? These thematic questions are analysed over four time periods. A snapshot of the regional economies of Scotland at the beginning of the twentieth century is given to provide a description of the economic structures inherited from the Victorian era. The processes of structural change which were at work between 1914 and 1945 are analysed next. These processes continued after the Second World War and gradually transformed the regional distribution of economic activity. Changes are discussed in the period up to 1975, this date chosen as marking the end of the long postwar boom, the first production of North Sea oil and the creation of the Scottish Development Agency. Finally, developments over the last quarter of the twentieth century are discussed.

Keywords: Scottish economy; regional economy; economic disparities; economic activity; Victorian era; Second World War; North Sea oil; Scottish Development Agency

Chapter.  10216 words. 

Subjects: Regional and Area Studies

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