Canadian cities like Calgary...
Canada's big cities need more power
Canada election 2011
Calgary and Toronto mayors
British Columbia's local & regional government
Canadian local government
Canada: Cities and provinces
Canada high-speed rail
Montréal bikes go global
Canadians and their cities
Directory of Canadian cities
City Mayors reports news from towns and cities around the world. Worldwide | Elections | North America | Latin America | Europe | Asia | Africa | Events |
Mayors from The Americas, Europe. Asia, Australia and Africa are competing for the annual World Mayor Award. More
City Mayors ranks the world’s largest as well as richest cities and urban areas. It also ranks the cities in individual countries, and provides a list of the capital cities of some 200 sovereign countries. More
City Mayors reports political events, analyses the issues and depicts the main players. More
City Mayors describes and explains the structures and workings of local government in Europe, The Americas, Asia, Australia and Africa. More
City Mayors profiles city leaders from around the world and questions them about their achievements, policies and aims. More
City Mayors deals with economic and investment issues affecting towns and cities. More
City Mayors reports on how business developments impact on cities and examines cooperation between cities and the private sector. More
City Mayors describes and explains financial issues affecting local government. More
City Mayors lists and features urban events, conferences and conventions aimed at urban decision makers and those with an interst in cities worldwide. More
City Mayors reports urban environmental developments and examines the challenges faced by cities worldwide. More
City Mayors reports on and discusses urban development issues in developed and developing countries. More
City Mayors reports on developments in urban society and behaviour and reviews relevant research. More
City Mayors deals with urban transport issues in developed and developing countries and features the world’s greatest metro systems. More
City Mayors examines education issues and policies affecting children and adults in urban areas. More
City Mayors investigates health issues affecting urban areas with an emphasis on health in cities in developing countries. More
City Mayors examines the importance of urban tourism to city economies. More
City Mayors examines the contributions history and culture make to urban society and environment. More
City Mayors describes the history, architecture and politics of the greatest city halls in the world. More
City Mayors invites readers to write short stories about people in cities around the world. More
City Mayors questions those who govern the world’s cities and talks to men and women who contribute to urban society and environment. More
City Mayors profiles national and international organisations representing cities as well as those dealing with urban issues. More
City Mayors reports on major national and international sporting events and their impact on cities. More
City Mayors lists cities and city organisations, profiles individual mayors and provides information on hundreds of urban events. More
Canada’s major cities should be given
...and Montreal should be given more power
On other pages
Study of Canada’s hub cities blinkered by regional politics
The 2006 Conference Board of Canada study released ‘Canada's Hub Cities’ is an interesting exercise designed to say that the country's hub cities should get extra help to support their economies and build up their infrastructure. A worthy message, for sure.
Unfortunately, the Conference Board falls victim to Canadian politics, something startling for an organization of its stature. A big part of the study's shortcoming is its puzzling reliance on provincial boundaries to identify nine hub cities. The Conference Board tests whether the rest of a province's economy is converging toward the GDP growth rate of its ‘hub city’.
The trouble is that, given the size disparity of provincial and regional economies across Canada, the list of the nine hub cities includes hubs of completely different magnitudes and ignores the hierarchy of urban centres, which has nothing to do with provincial boundaries. Notably, the list manages to discard Ottawa-Gatineau, the nation's fourth-largest metropolitan centre and a G-8 capital city.
Let's take a look at what the Conference Board says. The cities that qualify as hubs in its study have a leading share of their province's GDP. The three undisputed hubs in this respect are Winnipeg, Vancouver and Montréal (65 per cent, 53.2 per cent and 49 per cent respectively). Then, the Conference Board combines pairs of cities: Calgary and Edmonton, despite being three hours apart, are somehow joined as one ‘hub’ that commands 64.8 per cent of Alberta's GDP. And Regina and Saskatoon are joined to account for 44.7 per cent of Saskatchewan's GDP. Just so the east doesn't feel left out, Halifax is added as a hub city because it takes 46.3 per cent of Nova Scotia's GDP. The Conference Board actually elevates Halifax as a super-regional hub for all four Atlantic provinces, but does this without calculating Halifax's GDP as a share of the Atlantic Region's GDP (obviously, its share would be much smaller).
What follows is a list of calculations that attempt to demonstrate how each region's economy is trying to catch up to their hub's economy, with actual results showing that this convergence, in the Conference Board's own words, is "minimal at best."
What we have here is mathematics obscuring logic. More