Regionalism In Canada

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Published in “The Canadian Journal of Political science”, Christopher Cochrane and Andrea Perrella examine the concept of regionalism in Canadian politics, in their article titled “Regions, Regionalism and Regional Differences in Canada”.

As a thesis, the article aims to analyze the origin and cause of regionalism in Canada, addressing the issue of government intervention in the economy and the different opinions towards it as the primary focus of their arguments. It is evident that regional differences exist aspects of politics such as voting behaviour, political culture, ideology, attitudes and public opinion. There is however little agreement on the cause of these regional divisions or, indeed, about what constitutes as a region. In general
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The first argument of which is that “regionalism should be conceptualized as a psychological attachment to the people, institutions, and characteristics of a given geographic area.” (829, cochrane) What this means is that regionalism occurs because people form individual affiliations to the multiple regions that they consider themselves to belong to. As quoted in the article, “people are attached to the places they inhabit; this identification defines a politically relevant group; and, all else being equal, they care more about fellow locals than those who live further away” (Cochrane), therefore the decisions they make are based on what they consider to be best for the region in which they belong.The second argument brought out in the article is that there are varying causes of regional differences and thus regional differences do not stem from a single origin. Lastly, the article points out that competing explanations for regional differences in Canada are routinely tested against different evidence arising from different definitions of region as a result of the advances in data collection that allow for the consideration of the characteristics of each of the multitude of regions that people belong to in the explanations of public opinion and individual behaviour, in simpler terms, the article suggests that due to increased computational resources researchers are able to analyze different opinions and behaviour in all the different regions, ranging from provincial boundaries to language

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