The challenge of connecting people, ideas, and resources across communities stems from the quest for enhanced competition and cooperation in an increasingly interconnected world. At the same time, the basic infrastructure to foster wealth creation is asymmetrically distributed across regions of the globe. Evidence seems clear that through deepening networks in sub-regions of the world, production chains would extend towards a better competitive position of economic and social actors, but also would be inclusive.
However, the economics of networks calls for compatibility and minimum standards to optimize positive externalities arising from them. Some key conditions include infrastructure in the areas of financial markets, physical infrastructure such as ports, roads, and international borders; telecommunications; but additionally coordination and compatibility in business practices; labor markets; and legal and regulatory settings, forms a challenge both for analytical and systematic research that seems insufficient at present mainly in emerging economies, and for policy making.
Connecting People, Ideas, and Resources Across Communities looks at this situation within five areas: Promoting Institutional Change; Building Capacity; Fostering Connectivity; Measuring and Modeling for Improved Understanding; Learning from Case Studies.