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Border Planning in the San Diego-Tijuana Region: Local Planning and National Policy

Abstract

Globalization processes are changing the roles of borders around the world. It is considered that with globalization border regions gain independence from their national capitals and are in a position to develop cross border planning efforts with their neighbors. However, in many cases borders are still used as means to exercise sovereignty by limiting the flow of people, goods, and information. Moreover, national governments often have interests conflicting with the economic and environmental development goals of a border region. By looking at the Californias border and focusing on the San Diego-Tijuana region, the largest metropolitan area on the border, this essay aims to illustrate how local city and regional planning is affected by policies at the national level. These policies can take the form of immigration control, anti-terrorism security, trade agreements, or environmental regulation. By looking at three categories of planning issues along the border: economic development, environmenta l protection, and border security, this essay argues for the importance of capitalizing on existing formal cross-border collaboration channels and social ties is a plausible strategy to balance the needs of local agents and national governments.

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