International Conference: „Internal Peripheries in International Comparison, 1500-2015“, Vienna 20, 21 October 2017

Debates on economic disparities have led to the emergence of a new category in historical research during the 1990s: internal peripheries. This category is based on Immanuel Wallerstein’s world system framework on the one hand, and on the studies on regional differentiation from a historical perspective that have taken place since the 1960s on the other. Internal peripheries, Hans-Heinrich Nolte claims, are spaces organized in order to benefit people living elsewhere, i.e. in the core area. The focus on the regional level results from the notion that nation states are highly heterogeneous units. Accordingly, in order to enhance our understanding of the genesis and operation of spatial inequalities, exchange processes should be focused on the regional and the local level, which in turn are related to wider national and supranational scales. Regions are spatial entities which, as a rule, are smaller than states and usually are located within their borders, but they can also transcend state boundaries and form inter-state spatial units. Internal peripheries are thus defined in terms of economic geography, and rarely follow relational-political schemes, such as the relationship between a capital city and a border region.
The conference presents and discusses different case studies on regional development within Europe in a comparative perspective from the early modern age to the present.

Organizers:  Klemens Kaps, Andrea Komlosy, Hans-Heinrich Nolte