Tuesday, 7 November 2017

Brandon Ellem and Matthew Tonts on the Australian Experiences of the Global Commodities Boom and the Reshaping of Regional Economies

Ellem, Brandon and Tonts, Matthew (2017) ‘The Global Commodities Boom and the Reshaping of Regional Economies: TheAustralian Experience’, Australian Geographer, published online, 23 October. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/00049182.2017.1388761

Abstract: Since the publication of Fagan and Webber’s Global Restructuring in 1994, Australia has experienced one of the most significant commodities-led economic booms in its history. Increasing global demand for iron ore, natural gas, coal and a host of other resources from the early 2000s contributed to a period of sustained economic growth, low unemployment and rising per capita incomes. While popular and political discourses have tended to focus on the national benefits of the boom, in reality the processes at play were complex, spatially uneven and highly contested. In this paper, we offer a multi-scalar interpretation of how the global commodities boom has reshaped Australia’s space economy. It reflects on the experience of the Pilbara region of Western Australia, arguing that the boom contributed to fundamental shifts in the nature of territorial development, socio-spatial relations, and economic governance.