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Public administration and international insertion of cities


The present project is a follow-up on a previous study entitled "Strategic public administration of sub-national governments in processes of international insertion and regional integration," the final report of which was submitted and approved early this year of 2003. Its conclusions revealed a structural change in international relations over the last decades that rendered possible external action of regional government spheres. We found that local government spheres were outstanding in this aspect and were thus chosen for study. Our team now presents a proposal to study local governments' initiatives to enter international relations. We chose the city of São Paulo as an empirical focus of elaboration owing to its global city characteristics, requiring a strategy of external action that afford systematic benefit from this condition. The research is to be carried out based on pioneer experience in Barcelona - a benchmarking the field, comparing what is being developed today in the administration of São Paulo with similar initiative in other cities, such as Buenos Aires, Montevideo, Mexico City and Santiago. As a parameter of comparison, the capacity of strategic repositioning of cities shall be analyzed, regarding processes in course at an international level, involving: 1) the exploration of the potential to perform and institutionalize regional and hemispheric blocks, such as MERCOSUL and ALCA - taking into account even its negotiations with the European Union and with other countries of South America, and 2) establishment and development of cities and regions international networks or, still, of local and regional authorities networks. As well as a political analysis regarding specific fields of management of international relations, aspects of an economic and social nature will also be considered. This explains the interest not only for the study of impacts of imports and exports - and of tax structures in municipalities, but also for the analysis of social demands by rendering original integration processes democratic. Finally, we shall strive to identify up to what point the municipal governments have and use relevant knowledge about their juridical possibilities of action towards building conditions to expand their own limits, at an international level. (AU)

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