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Found 13 results

  1. On vient de me recommander ce livre; sûrement qu'il y en aura ici qui seront intéressés... The Endless City At the turn of the twenty-first century, the world is faced with an unprecedented challenge. It must address a fundamental shift in the world’s population towards the cities, and away from mankind’s rural roots.Over the course of two years, a group of internationally renowned professionals from a variety of different disciplines and backgrounds gathered together in six world cities to take stock of the new urban condition and to offer an approach to dealing with it. The Urban Age conferences – organised by the London School of Economics and Political Science and Deutsche Bank’s Alfred Herrhausen Society – centred on six very different cities. In Shanghai and Mexico City, the urban population is experiencing rapid growth and change,while Berlin is coming to terms with shrinking expectations.The result was a sometimes passionate, always challenging and informed debate on how architects, urbanists, politicians and policy makers can constructively plan the infrastructure and development of the endless city, to promote a better social and economic life for its citizens. 34 contributors from across Europe, South America, China, Africa and the U.S. set the agenda for the city – detailing its successes as well as its failures. Authoritatively edited by Ricky Burdett and Deyan Sudjic, The Endless City presents the outcome of this pioneering initiative on the future of cities. It has a follow-up volume called Living in the Endless City (2011). http://lsecities.net/publications/books/the-endless-city/
  2. City planners take new look at urban vistas Frances Bula, Special to the Globe and Mail, March 30th, 2009 --------------------- Vancouver’s famous view corridors have prompted more anguished howls from architects than almost anything else I can think of over the years. Now, the city is looking at re-examining them. (And, as the sharp-eyed people at skyscraper.com have noted, the posting for people to run the public consultation went up on city website Friday. You can see their comments on the whole debate here.) You can get a flavour of the arguments from my story in the Globe today, which I’ve reproduced below. --------------------- Vancouver is legendary as a city that has fought to prevent buildings from intruding on its spectacular mountain backdrop and ocean setting. Unlike Calgary, which lost its chance to preserve views of the Rockies 25 years ago, or Toronto, which has allowed a highway plus a wall of condo towers to go up between the city and its lake, Vancouver set an aggressive policy almost two decades ago to protect more than two dozen designated view corridors. But now the city is entertaining re-examining that controversial policy, one that has its fierce defenders and its equally fierce critics, especially the architects who have had to slice off or squish parts of buildings to make them fit around the corridors. And the city’s head planner is signalling that he’s definitely open to change. “I’ve got a serious appetite for shifting those view corridors,” says Brent Toderian, a former Calgary planner hired two years ago, who has been working hard to set new directions in a city famous for its urban planning. “The view corridors have been one of the most monumental city-shaping tools in Vancouver’s history but they need to be looked at again. We have a mountain line and we have a building line where that line is inherently subjective.” The issue isn’t just about preserving views versus giving architects free rein. Vancouver has used height and density bonuses to developers with increasing frequency in return for all kinds of community benefits, including daycares, parks, theatres and social housing. A height limit means less to trade for those amenities. Mr. Toderian, who thinks the city also needs to establish some new view corridors along with adjusting or eliminating others, says a public hearing on the issue won’t happen until the fall, but he is already kicking off the discussion quietly in the hope that it will turn into a wide-ranging debate. “The input for the last few years has been one-sided, from the people who think the view corridors should be abolished,” he said. “But we’re looking forward to hearing what everyone thinks. Most people who would support them don’t even think about them. They think the views we have are by accident.” The view-corridor policy, formally adopted in 1989, was the result of public complaints over some tall buildings going up, including Harbour Centre, which is now, with its tower and revolving restaurant, seen as a defining part of the Vancouver skyline. But then, it helped spur a public consultation process and policy development that many say confused the goal of preserving views with a mathematical set of rules that often didn’t make sense. One of those critics is prominent architect Richard Henriquez, who said the corridors don’t protect the views that people have consistently said they value most from the city’s many beaches and along streets that terminate at the water. Instead, he says many of the view corridors are arbitrarily chosen points that preserve a shard of view for commuters coming into town. That has resulted in the city losing billions of dollars of potential development “for someone driving along so they can get a glimpse of something for a second.” And, Mr. Henriquez argues, city residents have a wealth of exposure to the city’s mountains throughout the region. “Downtown Vancouver is a speck of urbanity in a sea of views,” said Mr. Henriquez, who is feeling the problem acutely these days while he works on a development project downtown where the owners are trying to preserve a historic residential hotel, the Murray, while building an economically feasible tower on the smaller piece of land next to it. The view corridor means the building has to be shorter and broader and is potentially undoable. His project is one in a long list of projects that have been abandoned or altered because of view corridor rules in Vancouver. The Shangri-La Hotel, currently the tallest building in the city at 650 feet, is sliced diagonally along one side to prevent it from straying into the view corridor. At the Woodward’s project, which redeveloped the city’s historic department store, one tower had to be shortened and the other raised to fit the corridor. And architect Bing Thom’s plan for a crystal spire on top of a development next to the Hotel Georgia was eventually dropped because city officials refused to budge on allowing the needle-like top to protrude. But one person wary about the city tinkering with the policy is former city councillor Gordon Price. “When people talk about revisiting, it just means one thing: eroding,” said Mr. Price, still a vocal advocate on urban issues. “People may only get this fragment of a view but it’s very precious. And those fragments will become scarcer as the city grows. The longer they remain intact, the more valuable they become.” It’s a debate that’s unique to Vancouver. Mr. Toderian said that when he was in Calgary, there was no discussion about trying to preserve views from the downtown to the Rockies in the distance. --------------------- cet article n'est pas tres recent, mais je sais pas s'il avait deja ete poste sur ce forum. meme s'il y a des differences, a mon avis beaucoup de ces arguments pourraient s'appliquer aussi pour Montreal. est-ce qu'on devra attendre une autre vague de demande bousillee pour relancer le debat ?
  3. Corn-based ethanol: The negatives outweigh the positives JEFFREY SIMPSON From Wednesday's Globe and Mail July 30, 2008 at 7:58 AM EDT Canada's governments have done something really stupid in subsidizing corn-based ethanol, and requiring its increased use, but apparently cannot correct their mistake. As a policy to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, corn-based ethanol is a poor option; as a farm subsidy program, it's also a poor bet. Making matters worse, corn-based ethanol takes corn-for-food out of production, and moves land from other kinds of production into corn, thereby adding to what are already rising food prices. Governments, here and in the U.S., thought they were doing great things for the environment and helping farmers, too. Ethanol policy was, to quote the Harper government, a "win-win." Actually, it was a lose-lose policy for all but corn producers, who, naturally enough, have rallied furiously to protect their good fortune. Many researchers have exposed the follies of subsidizing corn-based ethanol production, the latest being Douglas Auld, in an extremely well-documented paper for the C.D. Howe Institute. Mr. Auld has surveyed the research literature about the putatively beneficial effects of corn-based ethanol on replacing gasoline. The theory is that such ethanol produces fewer greenhouse gas emissions than gasoline from a vehicle engine. Indeed, it does, but that simple statement ignores what energy is required to produce a litre of ethanol. When the so-called "lifecycle" of ethanol production is counted, Mr. Auld concludes (as have many others) that ethanol doesn't lower GHG outputs. Remember, too, that ethanol delivers less energy per litre than gasoline, so more litres of production are required to move a vehicle a certain distance. Mr. Auld, therefore, correctly concludes, "It is clear from the evidence to date that there is no consensus regarding the efficacy of corn-based ethanol either to reduce GHGs or reduce overall energy demands." But we aren't dealing with "evidence," rather with political optics from governments wanting to look "green" and from a desire to help farmers. And so, the Harper government replaced the previous special tax exemption for ethanol to a producer credit that will cost the country about $1.5-billion. To this sum were added loans, biofuel research grants plus mandatory ethanol content requirements. In other words, the government pushed up the supply of corn-based ethanol through subsidies, then pushed up the demand through regulation. Provinces got in on the act, offering producer credits and mandatory ethanol content requirements. Putting the provincial and federal policies together produced whopping advantages for ethanol of about $400-million a year. For such money, Canadians might expect at least some decline in greenhouse gas emissions. They will be disappointed. There will be few reductions, and Mr. Auld estimates that these might cost $368 a tonne - way, way higher than other per-tonne costs for eliminating carbon dioxide, the main climate-warming gas. By contrast, one part of the Harper government's proposed climate-change policy would see big companies that do not meet their intensity-based reduction targets paying $15 a tonne into a technology fund. World prices for carbon offsetting these days are about $30 a tonne. However, even if this form of ethanol is a climate-change bust, at least it's great for farmers. Not so fast. It's a boon to the corn producers, but to supply all the additional demand for ethanol, up to half the current farmland for corn will be used. As more land is diverted to corn for ethanol, there will be less corn for human and animal consumption. So whereas corn producers will gain, livestock producers will suffer. As their costs rise, so will the price of their products to consumers. It's wrong to blame the rush to ethanol for rising food prices here and abroad. Let's just say the rush contributes to the problem. Mr. Auld estimates that if you take the direct subsidies for ethanol production of $400-million a year, and add the costs of higher food to consumers, the wealth transfer to corn-based farmers could soon be about $800-million. It's the classic case of subsidies distorting markets: One group gains and mobilizes all of its resources to protect its gains, insisting these gains reflect the public good; whereas in reality almost everyone else loses but doesn't complain. So we have a silly policy with hundreds of millions of dollars going down the policy drain, achieving none of the objectives the politicians claimed.
  4. http://www.montrealgazette.com/business/independent+Quebec+might+benefit+from+currency+report/9637904/story.html An independent Quebec might benefit from its own currency: report Parti Québécois leader Pauline Marois said an independent Quebec would accept the loonie, along with Canadian monetary policy, and consider asking for a seat at the Bank of Canada. Photograph by: Jonathan Hayward , THE CANADIAN PRESS An independent Quebec might be better off with its own currency rather than following Parti Québécois leader Pauline Marois’s suggestion that it keep the Canadian dollar, a report says. A Quebec currency and separate monetary policy could bring “potential benefits” in the long term to Quebec, Paul Ashworth and David Madani of Capital Economics said in a research report. “The basic problem Quebec faces is that it is a manufacturing-orientated province tied to the resource-rich provinces in the west. The energy boom has boosted the economic performance of those western provinces, saddling Quebec’s manufacturers with a high exchange rate and higher than needed interest rates.” A Quebec currency would presumably depreciate against the Canadian and U.S. dollars, particularly if interest rates were lower than the rest of Canada. The resulting boost to Quebec competitiveness should trigger a rise in exports and a reduction in imports, the report said. But a referendum on separation would have negative consequences — including on investments in Quebec and higher yields on Quebec provincial debt — while a new Quebec currency would bring additional challenges, the economists noted. “If the Quebec currency depreciated in value against the Canadian dollar, then it would make it harder for the new government to repay any debt still denominated in Canadian dollars. The same goes for Quebec households and businesses that had borrowed Canadian dollars.” Separation would bring the loss of equalization payments — $9.3 billion this year, equivalent to about 2.5 per cent of Quebec GDP — while contending with higher debt servicing costs. “The bigger problem is the legacy of provincial debt, equivalent to 49 per cent of Quebec GDP. Assuming that an independent Quebec assumed responsibility for a per capita share of federal debt, too, we estimate that its overall debt burden would rise to 89 per cent of GDP. Under those circumstances, Quebec might find its borrowing costs rising, which would only add to the budget deficit and, in conjunction with the loss of equalization payments, force the new government into a sizable fiscal consolidation. “The risk of default would also be greater if an independent Quebec allowed the Bank of Canada to control monetary policy, since it couldn’t resort to printing more currency.” On the campaign trail last week, Marois said an independent Quebec would accept the loonie, along with Canadian monetary policy, and consider asking for a seat at the Bank of Canada. Her comments sparked discussion over the economic costs of sovereignty even though polls show support for independence running well below 50 per cent. Capital Economics, known for its bearish views of the Canadian housing market, weighed in on Wednesday. “Politicians who are striving for independence, whether it is in Scotland or Quebec, know that talk of adopting a new currency makes the electorate very nervous, so they have a tendency to argue that the new sovereign state would be able to keep its existing monetary arrangements,” the economists wrote. In any event, Quebec should be looking to adopt a looser monetary policy than the rest of Canada, the report’s authors said. “The evidence is overwhelming that interest rates should be set lower in Quebec, to provide more support to the depressed economy.”
  5. Launch of the Institut de politiques alternatives de Montréal A think tank is created to shed light on urban planning and development policy in Montréal. MONTREAL, Oct. 14 /CNW Telbec/ - Phyllis Lambert, architect, Founding Director and Chair of the Board of Trustees of the CCA, Dimitri Roussopoulos, founder of the Montréal Urban Ecology Centre, and Dinu Bumbaru, Policy Director of Héritage Montréal, announced today the creation of a think tank, the Institut de politiques alternatives de Montréal (IPAM). This citizens' initiative seeks to contribute to viable urban planning in Montréal, to its economic and sustainable development, and local democracy. As an independent and multidisciplinary organisation, IPAM has been formed to play a key role over the long term in the municipal debate on policy choices leading to an equitable and prosperous society. The economic, social and ecological challenges to urban development require an open-minded dialogue accessible to all sectors of Montréal society. IPAM is created as a think tank, a research centre, and an open public forum where different publics can meet, exchange ideas, and debate. It will act to provide a way for civil society to contribute its own innovative solutions alongside those of municipal bodies to help shape Montréal's long-term future. "The considerable impact of economic development in the City of Montréal and the megaprojects it has proposed, clearly indicate that we are currently at a major crossroad," said Phyllis Lambert. "The establishment of IPAM is essential: for it is clear that everyone that makes up the city's civil society must understand and agree on a definition and parameters of city planning, and they must share a clear vision of their rightful place in a permanent, constructive, democratic and effective dialogue with political decision-makers." An independent, multidisciplinary, and inclusive organisation, IPAM's purpose is to play a key role in the municipal debate on policy choices leading to an equitable and prosperous society. IPAM's intention is to contribute the expertise of individuals from different spheres within the community. "By combining the strengths and expertise of a wide range of specialists in complementary fields of activity both locally and from elsewhere, including university research, business, socioeconomics, neighbourhood roundtables, ethnic communities, and environmental NGOs, we will create a centre of reference composed of people who will mobilise around issue of sociology, economy, democracy and physical planning related to urban development and recommend courses of action for the municipal administration in each of these areas," added Dimitri Roussopoulos. According to Dinu Bumbaru, "With the City about to update the Urban Master Plan, Montreal needs a framework that integrates urban planning, economic planning and sustainable development, which is why IPAM will establish six working groups to tackle questions of long-term economic and cultural development: heritage, poverty, social housing and social justice, ecology, urban planning and transportation, and democracy." IPAM's work will concentrate on the following two activities: - Dissemination information and holding public debates by organizing public forums, conferences and seminars concerning a great variety of challenges in urban planning. - Monitoring the municipal administration's activities through annual evaluation of the annual reports of the Ville de Montréal on urban planning, and of the Office de consultation publique de Montréal, and the Ombudsman's report. As a first initiative IPAM will, the day after the elections, call on the new City Administration to hold a citizens' summit on the future of Montréal in partnership with civil society, permitting an exchange of ideas and experience, in order to help to establish the guidelines for the administration's new mandate. For further information: Louise Constantin, IPAM, (514) 769-4553, [email protected]; Isabelle Huiban, Press Relations, Office of Phyllis Lambert, (514) 222-4307, [email protected]
  6. Battle lines drawn on environment at premiers rendezvous in Quebec City LEE GREENBERG and MARIANNE WHITE, Canwest News Service Published: 5 hours ago Alberta Premier Ed Stelmach issued a stern warning against a national cap-and-trade program yesterday, underscoring divisions among Canada's 13 premiers and territorial leaders at the outset of a three-day meeting featuring discussions on climate change strategy. Stelmach and Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall scuttled any hope of a unified cap-and-trade program, making it clear they consider the policy a thinly disguised attempt to share in the billions generated by western oil and gas. "There's only one inter-regional transfer of wealth in this country and it's called equalization," Stelmach said. Sam the man and the premiers: An actor portraying Samuel de Champlain mingles with provincial premiers and territorial leaders attending the Council of the Federation in Quebec City yesterday. "There won't be another one from the province of Alberta. And that's as straight an answer as I can give." "We will fight aggressively against any initiative that would redistribute not just wealth, but opportunity, and threaten our 'have' status," Wall added. "Because (our prosperity) is good for the country." The two Prairie premiers placed themselves squarely against Ontario and Quebec, which recently announced their intention to begin a cap-and- trade program in 2010, as well as B.C. and Manitoba, which have both signed on to cap-and-trade programs under the aegis of the Western Climate Initiatives. The group also includes Quebec and seven U.S. states. Cap-and-trade would require companies exceeding emissions caps to trade for credits from greener firms. Both Wall and Stelmach cast aspersions on the viability of cap and trade, touting instead carbon capture and storage (CCS) technology. Alberta last week announced a $2-billion investment in CCS, also known as sequestration, a process that aims to store carbon emissions by injecting them into deep geological formations. Most provinces have at least something in common when it comes to climate change - they have better plans to tackle it than Ottawa, according to the report released yesterday by the David Suzuki Foundation. As the premiers gathered for the Council of the Federation, the conservation group noted that almost all provinces are stepping up with strong targets and policies in the absence of federal leadership. The report card shows that British Columbia is leading the pack with its carbon tax. The Suzuki Foundation gives a good rating to Quebec and Ontario for their policies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and their proposed cap-and-trade system. Manitoba also gets the thumbs-up. Not surprisingly, Alberta rated the worst, with Saskatchewan not far from the bottom. "For Alberta to be moving backward is incomprehensible," said Dale Marshall, climate-change policy analyst with the Suzuki Foundation.
  7. As Greater Montreal grows, both demographically and physically, public officials will soon have to decide whether or not suburban development should be constrained. In other words, do you believe a "green belt" is needed? If you do believe in a green belt, what should be the limits? If not, what are your reasons for opposing such a policy?
  8. Bachand attacks Feds over funding cut Don Macdonald, The Gazette Published: Wednesday, June 04 Quebec's economic development minister is on the warpath over federal funding cuts to about 60 non-profit organizations involved in economic development across the province. Raymond Bachand said he's been unable to persuade federal minister Jean-Pierre Blackburn to reconsider the cuts so now he's taking the battle public. Bachand said the policy will damage the province's economy and called for the intervention of Prime Minister Stephen Harper. "This is going to be a political fight," he said in an interview. "It's a bad policy of that minister. And, at the end of the day, it's a bad policy of the government if the prime minister does not intervene to change that policy, or change the minister." The federal agency is eliminating operating grants over three years to non-profit organizations across a wide swath of sectors including such groups as Montréal International, the Quebec Film and Television Council, Aéro Montreal, Institut National d'Optique and Fur Council of Canada, according to a list provided by Bachand's office. Bachand said the organizations play an important role in developing the economy. They bring companies, government and research centres around the same table and work together on common initiatives such as marketing campaigns and making international contacts, he said. The mininster calculated the cuts will total between $20 million and $30 million by the third year. "It doesn't make sense," Bachand said. "You need people do that job. It's part of the infrastructure...How do you make progress without having the specific players of an industry around the table and developing business plans?" A Blackburn aide said the economic development agency is eliminating its funding for operating budgets to redirect the money to assisting small and medium-sized businesses "that are in a position to actually create jobs." Pierre Miquelon, a senior adviser to Blackburn, said about 70 per cent of the agency's budget has been going to the non-profits and it's time for the companies in the different sectors to pony up more money to support the groups if they believe it's deserved. "Maybe it's time that the community pays for the operations of the non-profit in question," Miquelon said. "If the community will not provide the cash for operating costs why should the Canadian taxpayer do so?" He added the agency will continue to subsidize organizations for individual projects with "a beginning, a middle and an end." But Bachand suggested there's a political motive behind the cuts. "Politicians like to give money and have their picture in newspapers," he said. "And if you give money to Montréal International and these groups...you don't get your photo in the newspaper." Hans Fraiken, head of the Quebec Film and Television Council, said his organization, which promotes Quebec as a shooting location, has lost $400,000 in federal funding plus another $200,000 in municipal money that was contingent on it. Those cuts, on a $1.5 million budget, may force the closure of the two-year-old organization that Fraiken said brought $260 million in foreign capital to the province last year and generated $12 million to $14 million in federal revenue. Alan Herscovici, executive vice president of the Fur Council of Canada, said Blackburn's agency cut $50,000 in funding to promote the annual North American Fur and Fashion Exposition in Montreal to foreign buyers. Bachand's department ended up replacing the federal funding but Herscovici questioned the wisdom of the cuts for what is the largest fashion trade show in Canada. "We know that manufacturers are under siege with the rise of the Canadian dollar and the weakening U.S. economy," said Hersovici, who noted the Fur Council receives federal funding for other initiatives. "In supporting the show they support all the manufacturers. They don't have to pick winners and losers." "It's a small investment to help a lot of people." [email protected] http://www.canada.com/montrealgazette/news/business/story.html?id=473e52e9-b789-4f48-9cee-b296c5b86cfe
  9. Voici un extrait de l'article. I have to admit that this stuff pisses me off. We are Canada's #2 economy, but its as if we've become irrelevant. Instead of focusing on building a competitive global area, we've been focused on renaming metro stations instead. This is a wake up call to all Montrealers, we're watching the parade pass us right by. http://business.financialpost.com/2014/07/23/alberta-economy-canada/?__lsa=aad7-50ba Ontario has been hurt by cutbacks at automakers such General Motors Co. and weakness at smartphone maker BlackBerry Ltd. Quebec has struggled with with Montreal-based Bombardier Inc. seeing delays with its new CSeries jet and lumber and paper mills closing. To be sure, Canada’s economy still benefits from a broad array of commodity exports and is underpinned by the world’s safest banks headquartered in Toronto. “Canada is becoming a tale of two cities, Toronto and Calgary,” said Jack Mintz of the University of Calgary’s School of Public Policy, who used to teach at University of Toronto. “I don’t think growth in Alberta means other places are worse off,” he said. Ontario has lost manufacturing competitiveness to China, the U.S. and Mexico, he said. Calgary rated higher than Toronto in a review of prosperity across 24 global cities conducted by the Toronto Region Board of Trade. Calgary was second on superior growth for income and jobs, along with lower taxes, and Toronto was in third place. Paris topped the list.
  10. Au moins on va se consoler en jouant au Monopoly! National governments may shape the broad outlines of globalization, but where does it really play out? Where are globalization’s successes and failures most acute? Where else but the places where most of humanity now chooses to live and work—cities. The world’s biggest, most interconnected cities help set global agendas, weather transnational dangers, and serve as the hubs of global integration. They are the engines of growth for their countries and the gateways to the resources of their regions. In many ways, the story of globalization is the story of urbanization. But what makes a “global city”? The term itself conjures a command center for the cognoscenti. It means power, sophistication, wealth, and influence. To call a global city your own suggests that the ideas and values of your metropolis shape the world. And, to a large extent, that’s true. The cities that host the biggest capital markets, elite universities, most diverse and well-educated populations, wealthiest multinationals, and most powerful international organizations are connected to the rest of the world like nowhere else. But, more than anything, the cities that rise to the top of the list are those that continue to forge global links despite intensely complex economic environments. They are the ones making urbanization work to their advantage by providing the vast opportunities of global integration to their people; measuring cities’ international presence captures the most accurate picture of the way the world works. So, Foreign Policy teamed up with A.T. Kearney and The Chicago Council on Global Affairs to create the Global Cities Index, a uniquely comprehensive ranking of the ways in which cities are integrating with the rest of the world. In constructing this index of the world’s most global cities, we have collected and analyzed a broad array of data, as well as tapped the brainpower of such renowned cities experts as Saskia Sassen, Witold Rybczynski, Janet Abu-Lughod, and Peter Taylor. Specifically, the Global Cities Index ranks cities’ metro areas according to 24 metrics across five dimensions. The first is business activity: including the value of its capital markets, the number of Fortune Global 500 firms headquartered there, and the volume of the goods that pass through the city. The second dimension measures human capital, or how well the city acts as a magnet for diverse groups of people and talent. This includes the size of a city’s immigrant population, the number of international schools, and the percentage of residents with university degrees. The third dimension is information exchange—how well news and information is dispersed about and to the rest of the world. The number of international news bureaus, the amount of international news in the leading local papers, and the number of broadband subscribers round out that dimension. The final two areas of analysis are unusual for most rankings of globalized cities or states. The fourth is cultural experience, or the level of diverse attractions for international residents and travelers. That includes everything from how many major sporting events a city hosts to the number of performing arts venues it boasts. The final dimension— political engagement—measures the degree to which a city influences global policymaking and dialogue. How? By examining the number of embassies and consulates, major think tanks, international organizations, sister city relationships, and political conferences a city hosts. We learned long ago that globalization is much more than the simple lowering of market barriers and economic walls. And because the Global Cities Index pulls in these measures of cultural, social, and policy indicators, it offers a more complete picture of a city’s global standing—not simply economic or financial ties. The 60 cities included in this first Global Cities Index run the gamut of the modern urban experience. There’s thriving, wealthy London, with its firmly entrenched global networks built on the city’s history as capital of an empire. But there are also Chongqing, Dhaka, and Lagos, cities whose recent surges tell us a great deal about the direction globalization is heading and whose experiences offer lessons to other aspiring global cities. The cities we highlight are world leaders in important areas such as finance, policymaking, and culture. A few are megacities in the developing world whose demand for resources means they must nurture close ties with their neighbors and provide services to large numbers of immigrants. Some are gateways to their region. Others host important international institutions. In other words, they represent a broad cross section of the world’s centers of commerce, culture, and communication. THE WINNER’S CIRCLE So, which city topped them all? If anything, the results prove there is no such thing as a perfect global city; no city dominated all dimensions of the index. However, a few came close. New York emerged as the No. 1 global city this year, followed by London, Paris, and Tokyo. The Big Apple beat out other global powerhouses largely on the back of its financial markets, through the networks of its multinationals, and by the strength of its diverse creative class. Overall runner-up London won the cultural dimension by a mile, with Paris and New York trailing far behind. Perhaps surprisingly for a city known more for museums than modems, third-ranked Paris led the world in the information exchange category. No. 4 Tokyo ranked highly thanks to its strong showing in business. And, though it finished 11th overall, Washington easily beat out New York, Brussels, and Paris as the leader in global policy. Although the winners may be the usual suspects, they have plenty of new competition on their heels. Buoyed by their strong financial links, Hong Kong and Singapore finished at fifth and seventh, respectively. Chicago’s strong human-capital performance sent it into the eighth spot. What’s more, several strong performers are emerging from formerly closed societies: Beijing (No. 12), Moscow (19), Shanghai (20), and Dubai (27). The new, sometimes abbreviated, often state-led, paths to global dominance these cities are treading threaten the old formulas that London, New York, and Los Angeles (No. 6) followed to reach their high spots. As diverse as they are, the most successful global cities have several things in common: As New York proves, global cities are those that excel across multiple dimensions. Even Shanghai’s staggering, decades-long double-digit annual economic growth alone can’t make it global. The city also must determine how to use that wealth to influence policy, attract the brightest young minds, and accurately portray the rest of the world to its citizens. Global cities continuously adapt to changing circumstances. London may be the city hardest hit by the global credit crunch, but chances are that it will leverage its abundant global financial ties to bounce back. Singapore, San Francisco (15), and Mexico City (25) will no doubt be taking notes. As the world readjusts to the fits and starts of a volatile global economy, as well as other transnational problems such as climate change, human trafficking, and fuel shortages, the Global Cities Index will track the way cities maneuver as their populations grow and the world shrinks. Although we can’t predict next year’s winner, the odds are good that New York will have to fight to stay on top. How to Be a Global City There is no single correct path a city should tread to become global. But how should cities that want to boost their international profile go about it? They could follow any of the tried-and-true models that came before them. Just look at the various ways some of this year’s 60 global cities manage to use urbanization and globalization to their advantage. Open Cities What they look like: Large cities with a free press, open markets, easy access to information and technology, low barriers to foreign trade and investment, and loads of cultural opportunities. They often rely on a heavy service industry and are outward looking, rather than focused on domestic affairs. Who they are: New York (#1), London (#2), Paris (#3) Lifestyle Centers What they look like: Laid-back cities that enjoy a high quality of life and focus on having fun. They attract worldly people and offer cultural experiences to spare. Who they are: Los Angeles (#6), Toronto (#10) Regional Gateways What they look like: Efficient economic powerhouses with favorable incentives for businesses and easy access to the natural resources of their region. They attract smart, well-trained people from around the world, and they often must reinvent themselves to remain competitive. Who they are: Hong Kong (#5), Singapore (#7), Chicago (#8) National Leaders What they look like: Large cities that shape the collective identity of their countries. They usually have homogenous populations, and their new urban policies tend to evoke a shared history. They do well in international business, but not because they’re necessarily globally connected; in these places, foreign firms can find something no other city offers. Who they are: Tokyo (#4), Seoul (#9), Beijing (#12) Policy Hubs What they look like: Cities with outsized influence on national and international policy debates. Their think tanks, international organizations, and political institutions shape policies that affect all people, and they tend to be full of diplomats and journalists from somewhere else. Who they are: Washington (#11), Brussels (#13) Platform Cities What they look like: Large hubs in typically small countries that attract huge amounts of investment through their strategic locations and international connections. Firms don’t set up shop in these cities to invest in the local economy; they move there so they can reach important foreign financial markets without dealing with the region’s political headaches. Who they are: Amsterdam (#23), Dubai (#27), Copenhagen (#36) http://www.foreignpolicy.com/story/cms.php?story_id=4509&print=1
  11. Ontario: the Province that thinks it's Canada Amid regional grievances, McGuinty fights for a fair share of taxpayers' dollars MURRAY CAMPBELL From Saturday's Globe and Mail August 2, 2008 at 12:00 AM EDT Dalton McGuinty was doing a favour for reporters afflicted with summer-brain stupor. “Here's the news,” the Ontario Premier said, helpfully, after a speech late last month. “Ontarians are coming together to more effectively assert themselves in the face of an unfairness caused by the financial arrangements between us and Ottawa.” Indeed, it would be news if this coming-together was actually happening, and it would be momentous given the suggestion by the federal government this week that it is prepared to shift some economic powers to the provinces. But the residents of Canada's most populous province do not have an unbroken history of rising up as one to take on the federal government. Ontario is not Alberta, and the philosophy that provincial rights should be paramount has always had to compete with a powerful sense that Canada comes first. Mr. McGuinty embodies this duality. For more than three years, he has wasted few opportunities to make his claim that Ontario is being treated unfairly in Confederation because it receives, by the latest estimate, about $20-billion less in services from federal government than its taxpayers remit to Ottawa. He criticizes the federal equalization program – financed predominantly by Ontario taxpayers – for redistributing money to provinces that are more prosperous than his. He takes issue with health and other transfer payments that are less generous than those given to other provinces. And he asks why an unemployed worker in Ontario is treated more severely than in the rest of the country and why the Harper government wants to leave the province under-represented in the Commons. Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty gestures during his public lecture 'Ontario's Place in the 21st century' at the London School of Economics and Political Science in London, Monday, May 19, 2008. Hanging over all this is the feeling in Ontario that the 1988 U.S. free-trade pact broke the bargain of Confederation in which Canadians bought their manufactured goods from Ontario in return for a recycling of some of its wealth through programs such as equalization. The Premier is always careful to say that he is a proud Canadian and that he understands his province has been blessed by geography and circumstances that give it a responsibility to share its wealth. But the Premier's sustained effort – reflected in his website fairness.ca – suggests a growing sense of regionalism in Ontario. “My friends, it is time to stand up for our province, time to stand up for Ontario,” he said in his speech last month to the Chamber of Commerce in London, Ont. He suggested that lessons could be learned from other provinces that have gone mano-a-mano with federal administrations although he shied away from emulating Newfoundland Premier Danny Williams, who stormed out of one federal-provincial meeting in protest and then removed Canadian flags from provincial buildings. Ontarians who realize that Newfoundland has a much larger per-capita income than Ontario, thanks in part to $477-million in equalization payments this year may wish their Premier to be as aggressive. But while his tactics may be lower-key, Mr. McGuinty isn't going away. “It's becoming more and more urgent, and there's a continuing need to speak about it, because there hasn't been an appetite at the federal level to really engage in fixing the system,” said an official in the Premier's office. The question is whether Ontarians are likely to respond to his appeal or whether circumstances will transform Ontario into a province with a profound regional grievance. The trend line of estrangement from Ottawa suggests it is possible, but this has to be countered by the strong identification with Canada that Ontario residents have always shown. Mr. McGuinty recognizes other provinces will resent Ontario throwing its weight around. “There is a lazy caricature that is convenient for people, which people can resort to, which is that we're being greedy, we're being uncharitable, we're being un-Canadian,” he told the editorial board of The Globe and Mail in 2006. He also knows that talk of regionalism makes his voters uncomfortable. He is fond of comparing the province's role in Confederation to his own situation growing up as the eldest of 10 children. “My responsibility in the eyes of my parents could be summed up in one word: compliance,” he said in London. “Just be quiet and set a good example. Maybe there is a little bit of that to us here in Ontario.” Neither analysis deals completely with Ontario's complex, shifting history. The province had a very strong sense of identity right from the formation of Canada in 1867 but it also was proud that one of its own, John A. Macdonald, was its first prime minister. And Ontario was conscious that it owed its growing prosperity to the high-tariff walls erected as part of Macdonald's National Policy that sustained its manufacturing industries. But, as historian Randall White notes, long-serving premier Oliver Mowat (1872-1896) battled Macdonald for control of provincial resources (earning the nickname “the little tyrant”) and, later, both Howard Ferguson and Mitch Hepburn fought pitched battles with Ottawa over federal encroachment on provincial jurisdiction. Prevailing attitudes changed during the Second World War, which transformed Canada into a modern industrial state with Ontario at its centre. The postwar province was so diversified economically that it was touched by almost every federal policy. As Queen's University political economist Thomas Courchene has noted, “national policy had frequently had little choice but to be cast in a pro-Ontario light.” Leslie Frost believed that political relations had to reflect these economic ties. When he became Ontario's premier in 1949, he set about building a co-operative relationship with Ottawa. The province surrendered much of its taxing authority and agreed to the equalization scheme that vexes Mr. McGuinty. During Mr. Frost's 12 years in office, the old confrontations died away and the modern notion of Ontario as a helpful saviour of Confederation – exemplified by John Robarts' Confederation of Tomorrow conference in 1967 – took hold. So complete was this subsuming of Ontario's regional identity that historian Arthur Lower concluded in 1968 that the province had little collective will and asked in an article: “Does Ontario exist?” No one laughed and, indeed, historian Peter Oliver questioned seven years later why “anyone would attempt to write the history of a region which isn't.” Ontario was firmly by the federal government's side during the energy battles of the 1970s, supporting Ottawa's move, through the National Energy Program, to gain a larger share of Alberta's oil revenues. And Ontario forsook its old alliances with Quebec to side with the Trudeau government's push to patriate the Constitution and enact the Charter of Rights and Freedoms. The MPs that Ontarians send to Ottawa are still more likely to represent the federal argument to Ontario than vice versa – Mr. McGuinty has found few allies in any federal government caucus – but MPPs at Queen's Park began to fall out of step in the 1980s. The Peterson government was impatient with Brian Mulroney's agenda of fiscal restraint and free trade. In particular, Ontario saw the free-trade pact with the United States – the end of the old National Policy – as evidence that Ottawa was promoting the rest of Canada at its expense. By the early 1990s, Bob Rae concluded that the country seemed to be “based on the premise that everyone else could speak ill of Ontario and that this inherently wealthy place would continue to bankroll Canada.” In a 1993 speech, he described Ontario as “the part of Canada that dare not speak its name.” Mr. McGuinty owes much to Mr. Rae's decision to engage a consulting firm to draft a cost-benefit analysis to buttress his belief that the structure of Confederation in the wake of the free-trade deal and cuts in transfer payments neglected Ontario. Mr. Rae's “fair shares federalism” argument is the precursor of the current premier's “fairness” campaign. Mr. Harris agreed that the structure of Confederation served Ontario ill. He, too, fought the federal government (often along with other premiers) on everything from employment insurance to the Kyoto greenhouse-gas protocol. But the federal government at the time was preoccupied with Quebec, after the wake of the 1995 referendum that narrowly kept that province in the country. The federal Liberals' stranglehold on Ontario gave Mr. Harris's Progressive Conservative government no allies on Parliament Hill and Ontario's fundamental objections remained. Mr. McGuinty has earned some concessions in the past three years but the broad-ranging reform of fiscal relations he is seeking eludes him. His efforts seem to resonate with voters who find the notion of a $20-billion “gap” easy to comprehend. One opinion poll earlier this year gave him two-to-one support over federal Finance Minister Jim Flaherty in their war of words over Ontario's economic strategy. But will 13 million Ontarians find a will to act collectively and heed their Premier's call to arms? Mr. White concedes only that the province “is gradually recovering some sense of a regional identity it lost after the Second World War.” Mr. Courchene, too, is careful about predicting the future. “They're thinking of themselves as meriting better treatment from the federal government,” he said. “Does that make them a region? I don't know.” Certainly not in the way that Quebec is distinctive or the West feels it has been victimized by Bay Street and the NEP. It is also hard to define Ontario: The northwest feels closer to Manitoba and there is little identification with Toronto in the eastern part of the province. In addition, immigrants – and Ontario has been getting 125,000 or more a year – have only to look at their new passports to discern their allegiance. But circumstances may yet push Ontario into regional belligerence as the belief grows that the equalization program is unsustainable. Its taxpayers contribute 40 per cent of the cost of the scheme – $13.6-billion now, and growing by leaps and bounds – and this burden rises every year whether its economy grows or not. Conversely, while Alberta's oil revenues are part of the equation that determines payouts, the revenues themselves are off limits to the federal treasury. Mr. Courchene calculates that, partly as a result of this scheme, Ontario's per-capita revenues trail every other province. The prediction that Ontario will soon become a have-not province and qualify for payments that, absurdly, are largely funded by its own taxpayers casts a harsh light on the scheme's shortcomings. Mr. Courchene calls this prospect “fiscalamity,” and if Ontarians catch his drift Mr. McGuinty will have a blank cheque to throw some weight around. The eldest child may decide he's fed up with setting a good example and looking after the other kids.
  12. Quebec to limit family doctors next year Aaron Derfel Gazette health reporter Friday, November 28, 2008 Despite a shortage of doctors across the province, the Quebec government is planning to issue fewer permits than the actual number of graduates in family medicine next year, The Gazette has learned. A total of 238 doctors are expected to complete their residencies in family medicine and pass their board exams in 2009. However, the government is counting on issuing 220 permits, according to the Quebec Federation of General Practitioners. The gap stems from a five-year-old permits policy aimed at making sure that young doctors start their careers in short-staffed regions across the province. In the past, the government had issued more permits than the graduating class, and some regions had a harder recruiting new doctors. This year, however, the government has decided to keep a tight lid on permits to make sure that all regions are able to hire new doctors. But the policy - known as Plans régionaux d'effectifs médicaux or PREMs - has actually backfired and led to an exodus of mostly anglophone, Quebec-trained doctors quitting the province for Ontario and elsewhere, say critics. "It's absurd," said Mark Roper, a Westmount family physician, who is also chairman of the medical manpower committee of the Regional Department of General Medicine of Montreal. "It's almost like they're pushing young doctors out of the province." Most new doctors prefer to practise in Montreal rather than in small rural communities. Quebec has offered doctors financial carrots to work in the Far North, but it has used the stick to get them to practise in La Mauricie, the Outaouais and other regions. Before the PREMs, new doctors who decided to stay in Montreal were docked 30 per cent of their billings for the first three years of their careers. Most doctors toughed it out, so the government switched to the more restrictive PREM system. Each year, the Health Department - in co-operation with the federation of GPs - decides on a certain number of positiongs for the 15 regions of Quebec. Newly-graduated doctors must then apply for positions in a number of regions. Most apply to work in Montreal as their first choice, and if they don't get accepted, they are more likely to get hired by another region. For Montreal, the government has decided to issue only 54 permits even though the city has a shortage of about 300 family doctors. If new doctors decide to stay in Montreal, their billings will be docked by 25 per cent, not for the first three years but their entire careers. Figures obtained by The Gazette show that recruitment was actually higher before the PREMs system went into effect in every region except La Mauricie. So where have all those young doctors gone? Coincidentally, Quebec has been a net exporter of doctors to other provinces in the past five years, according to the Canadian Institute for Health Information. Serge Dulude, director of planning at the federation of GPs, confirmed the gap between the number of permits to be issued and the graduating class. But he said that these are projections and adjustments can be made. Some doctors might decide to pursue another medical specialization apart from family medicine. Others might fail their board exams. There are also young doctors who go on sick or maternity leaves, and so won't be applying for a PREM. "Besides that, some decide to take a break and to travel for a year, some decide not to go into medicine (after all), and some decide to leave Quebec." Health Minister Yves Bolduc has defended the PREMs policy as necessary, saying that without it some regions would have even bigger shortages of doctors. Marie-Éve Bédard, Bolduc's press attaché, provided The Gazette with different figures, but they still show a gap. She said that the government is projecting next year 217 new doctors, or new billers as it prefers to call them. At the same time, the governmet expects to issue 211 PREMs. However, she said that some regions still have PREMs that have gone unfilled from previous years, and when those are included, the true total is 235. Still, the federation of GPs is projecting a graduating class of 238. "It's totally false to suggest that this incites new doctors to practise elsewhere," Bédard said of the PREMs policy. "We're aware that there is a shortage and we have designed a plan to make sure that there is a fair distribution of doctors in all regions." Even so, the Quebec College of Physicians has criticized the PREMs policy as restrictive, and most doctors bitterly complain about it. Doris Streg, a Montreal GP who graduated in 1978, described the PREMs system as "magical thinking." The government is "not discussing the real bottleneck, which is the PREMs," Streg said in an email. "No matter how many new doctors are graduated, there will be no increase in availability of GPs to Montrealers unless this policy is removed." [email protected] © Montreal Gazette 2008