Experts in local development are obsessed by the apparent recent growth of competition among regions to attract productive activities. According to Laurent Davezies, they are focussing on the wrong aim: "what matters for the development of a given region is not to produce as much wealth as possible but to tap into as much consumer spending as possible".
The author argues that France is witnessing a growing divergence between the areas where things are produced as against those where they are consumed, as a result in particular of the amount of time spent not working and the places where we spend our leisure, which are quite separate from those where we work.
The areas where people go for their leisure time and as consumers (both being activities that incidentally stimulate local economies) are far more dynamic and attractive - in part thanks to the injection of public funds - than metropolitan areas (starting with the Paris region), where the quality of life is declining.
Laurent Davezies's conclusion is that the French are tending to move to regions that are more attractive for residential purposes, which means above all those focussing on consumption.