The international comparators project was a major study of 8 cities around the world that have turned themselves around from decline to success story. Each has been resilient in the face of waning industry, utilising policy instruments and collaborative initiative to bounce back. Researchers Suzanne Frick Ian Taylor and Paula Prenzel worked under Professors Paul Collier, Philip McCann, Colin Mayer and Vincent Goodstadt to produce 3 case study reports covering 8 cities in 6 countries these case studies offer examples of policy innovation for regional development that are instructive to the UK in its efforts to correct spatial inequality and other countries looking to weather post-industrial decline.

In this case study, the German cities of Duisburg, Dortmund and Leipzig are examined in detail by German researchers Dr Suzanne Frick, based at the University of Oxford, and Dr Paula Prenzel based at the University of Greifswald. Germany is renowned as an example of successful economic strategy across devolved levels of government.