The Latest Issue of the Geographical Review

The latest issue of the Geographical Review just came out and is now available on the Wiley Online Library . Some of the featured articles are the following:

EUROPEAN ARCHITECTURE IN ASIA
by Bret Wallach

In this article I draw attention to the galaxy of European buildings built over the last five centuries in Asia. I show how quickly and accurately European styles of the day were adopted in Asia, whether that style was Renaissance, Neoclassical, Gothic, Idiosyncratic Revivalist, or Modern. I argue that recent attention in Asia to architectural and urban preservation is itself of European origin. Although I suggest in conclusion that this architectural galaxy is part of an overwhelmingly one-sided process of globalization, my primary focus remains on the buildings themselves as the residue of one culture diffusing across distant domains.

MOSCOW ON THE RISE: FROM PRIMATE CITY TO MEGAREGION
by Robert Argenbright

In this article I examine Moscow’s role in the political-economic space of the Russian Federation. A broad range of data supports the thesis that the capital has become a primate city, one that serves no longer as the command center of a closed system but as the primary node of interconnection between Russia and the rest of the world. The effort to create a larger, polycentric “New Moscow” next to the ancient capital is marked by a tightening of central control, in contrast to governance regimes of European megaregions. Nevertheless, expansion of the capital region very likely will further boost Moscow’s dominance over the country.

LANDSCAPE CHANGE IN WESTERN AMAZONIA
By Santiago LÓpez, Rebecca Beard abd Rodrigo Sierra

Changes in settlement patterns have influenced food-production systems and territorial organization in western Amazonia, and landing strips have affected current land-use patterns in indigenous territories in the region. In this study we characterize riverine and interfluvial production systems in the lower Pastaza River Basin in Ecuador, using historical ethnographic records, remotely sensed data, surveyed information, and statistical descriptions. Results show that nucleation of settlements around landing strips has increased indigenous people’s control over their ancestral territories and changed the political and geographical landscape. At the same time, nucleation is slowly transforming indigenous livelihoods from mobile cultivation and foraging to sedentary farming. Even though indigenous communities will eventually become integrated into the national  economy, the main elements of the traditional food-production system will likely remain the same. Development policies should respond to local land-management strategies in order to ensure the long-term sustainability of Amazonian socioecological systems.

TEMPORAL AND SPATIAL DIMENSIONS OF NEWLY INCORPORATED MUNICIPALITIES IN THE UNITED STATES
by Leora Waldner, Kathryn Rice and Russell M. Smith

Scholarly literature on newly incorporated municipalities (nims) often focuses on why nims form. Instead of asking why nims formed, however, we ask why nims stopped forming. We first establish a temporal context for nims from 1950 to 2010, revealing an 86.2 percent decline in nim formation. The decline, triggered by stricter laws, smaller annexations, declining suburbanization, and boundary ossification, has profound implications for metropolitan fragmentation and public choice. We then establish a state-level spatial context, revealing distinct high-nim, low-nim, and flux states due to boundary ossification, growth, and state/regional policy stimuli such as consolidation efforts, grants, and growth management provisions.

RURAL REGIONAL GOVERNANCE IN THE UNITED STATES: THE CASE OF THE RESOURCE CONSERVATION AND DEVELOPMENT PROGRAM
by Max Lu and John C. Jacobs

Rural governance has drawn considerable attention from both local government officials and scholars in the United States since the early 1990s. It is touted as a way to mitigate the limitations of the traditional government unit-based approaches to problem solving and decision making and to foster partnerships across both jurisdictional boundaries and sectors (public, private, and nonprofit). Established in 1962, the Resource Conservation and Development (rc&d) program of the U.S. Department of Agriculture provides a unique model of rural regional governance. Acting as a coalition of governments, private businesses, individuals, and interest groups, the rc&d program provides the flexibility needed to deal with issues at the appropriate spatial scale. It incorporates aspects of both grassroots and governmental organizations and can bring together local interests and expertise with governmental policy and support in service provision, problem solving, and economic development. The approach does not necessarily entail loss of power on the part of the state, but it does provide a mechanism for local people to exercise their agency, to tackle their problems, and to decide which elements of their lives they want to sustain.

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