Not Chicago: voids in world city network formation

Ben Derudder*, Peter J. Taylor

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


This paper addresses some of the putative limitations of world city network research, which has often focused on producing “maps” of cities that are well-connected in the office networks of globalized producer services firms. We retain the data and model, but extend the conceptual focus and methodological toolkit by (1) disaggregating the network in its key geographical components and (2) focusing on notable absences in some of these geographies. The purpose of this paper, therefore, is to discuss some of the notable voids in the myriad processes that constitute world city network formation. Using data on the office networks of 175 producer services firms across 707 cities, we first focus on the surprising case of Chicago and subsequently deal with a total of 21 world city network voids. The paper is concluded with a discussion of theoretical implications and the relevance for the broader literature on global urban studies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1500-1524
Number of pages25
JournalUrban Geography
Issue number10
Early online date30 Sept 2020
Publication statusPublished - 26 Nov 2021


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