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Upper Silesia: The revival of a traditional industrial region in Poland

BARANYAI, NÓRA and LUX, GÁBOR (2015): Upper Silesia: The revival of a traditional industrial region in Poland. Published in: Regional Statistics , Vol. 4, No. 2 (February 2015): pp. 126-144.

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This paper provides an insight into the transformation processes that have affected Upper Silesia, a Polish border region with long traditions of industrialisation, autonomous structures and volatile historical changes. It shows how the region, profoundly affected by the structural crisis of mining and heavy industry and experiencing unfavourable demographic processes, has managed to recover and prosper under new conditions. In a fragmented space characterised by strong urbanisation, industrial restructuring has been based on the renewal of traditional branches and the creation of new development paths through reindustrialisation and service-based development. The size of Upper Silesia, and particularly the conurbation surrounding Katowice, has also led to attempts at establishing effective metropolitan governance, a challenge whose success depends as much on harmonising internal interests as finding a compromise acceptable by both the region and the central government.

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