Funkcjonalne i społeczne problemy integracji metropolitalnej. Przykład Łódzkiego Obszaru Metropolitalnego
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The conviction that metropolitan areas are of vital importance for the socio-economic development is one of the major paradigms of social development in the era of globalization. Among numerous problems associated with spatial metropolization there is the recognition of certain social and economic processes together with their spatial conditions. On the one hand, these conditions lead to the integration of metropolitan areas, but on the other, they may cause some diversification. According to the results of a few selected studies conducted on Łódź Metropolitan Area (Łódzki Obszar Metropolitalny), there has been a significant change in the role of an agglomeration and its location in the settlement system. Metropolitan integration takes place at the functional-spatial level, however, it is much more complex than it used to be before 1990. Disintegration, on the other hand, results from the autonomization of the settlement sub-systems of agglomerations, which occurs mainly due to the functioning of the local self-government and the renaissance of localism (the restoration of local identity). Local communities exhibit great commitment to their local communities, and as regards Łódź, this city is perceived, in terms of functional (practical) criteria, much more as a place where services are offered rather than a labor market. Furthermore, there is also a discrepancy between the image of Łódź as a metropolitan center (constructed primarily from the perspective of the center) and the public understanding of the concept of a metropolis and metropolization, including the management and administration of the region.