Advances in Economics and Business Vol. 6(4), pp. 241 - 255
DOI: 10.13189/aeb.2018.060405
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Analysing the New Millennium Role and Place of Socio-economic Geography in Deepening Regional Economic Cooperation and Integration: The Case of South Africa and Zimbabwe


Godfrey Chikowore 1,2,*, Harold J. Annegarn 3
1 College of Economic and Management Sciences, University of South Africa, South Africa
2 Centre for Applied Social Sciences, University of Zimbabwe, Zimbabwe
3 Department of Geography Environmental Management and Energy Studies, University of Johannesburg, South Africa

ABSTRACT

Proportional territorial distribution of productive forces historically determined the emergence of socio-economic geography. Deepening regional integration under scrutiny of socio-economic geography culminated in a system of economic regions. These economic regions were further used as special instruments on functional optimisation and management of productive forces guided by specialisation of labor. The process was influenced by scientific and technological advancements, which led to change from a single-sided to an integral multi-factor approach. In these circumstances socio-economic cultural regions emerged as functionally specialised territorial units presenting optimum combinations of productive and non-productive industrial sectors and enterprises. Within this context, the study analyses the role of socio-economic geography in better informing regional integration with reference to South Africa and Zimbabwe. New conceptual terms, such as socio-economic cultural disparities and territorial socio-economic cultural inequalities are proposed. Informed by transformation development theory, the study employs comparative methods of quantitative and qualitative data analysis. It analyses five aspects: (i) application of socio-economic geography to questions of regional integration; (ii) territorial differentiation, factors, forces and relations; (iii) Benefits of economic cooperation and integration for South Africa and Zimbabwe with global economy; (iv) essence of North-South and South-South dialogue; and (v) prospects of the role of socio-economic geography. The conclusions emphasise the role of socio-economic geography, using the newly defined concepts, in articulating a comprehensive theoretical and practical understanding of the processes needed to enhance regional integration.

KEYWORDS
Socio-economic Cultural Disparities, Socio-economic Cultural Backwardness, Territorial Socio-economic Cultural Inequalities, Socio-economic Cultural Regions, Production Forces and Factors, Regional Integration, Progressive Transformation, Socioeconomic Cu

Cite this paper
Godfrey Chikowore , Harold J. Annegarn . "Analysing the New Millennium Role and Place of Socio-economic Geography in Deepening Regional Economic Cooperation and Integration: The Case of South Africa and Zimbabwe." Advances in Economics and Business 6.4 (2018) 241 - 255. doi: 10.13189/aeb.2018.060405.