This article considers whether the growing theoretical and methodological diversity or pluralistic nature of economic geography contributes to its lack of engagement outside the discipline and academy. Although we are enthusiastic about the vibrancy this pluralism brings, we also speculate that it contributes to the discipline's tendency to fall short of significantly impacting key debates in the social sciences. In particular, we consider the disciplinary challenges to influencing mainstream debates over financialization and the recent financial crisis and the recurring lament that economic geography misses the boat by failing to significantly impact key scholarly and policy issues. Specifically, we suggest that methodological and theoretical diversity, local contextualization, and relational analysis, all of which we support as vital to the discipline, make it difficult to isolate a disciplinary core. We conclude that pluralism produces a vibrant discipline with unique explanatory power but that it also has important impacts on the design, execution, and influence of geographers' research outside the discipline.
- economic geography
- CREDIT CRUNCH