This paper reviews the regional policies of the Commonwealth Government's 1994 Working Nation White Paper and assesses its subsequent impact on this policy area. It outlines the recessionary macroeconomic context which allowed the emergence of Working Nation, and considers the innovation and feasibility of those policies. The paper then examines the main currents of regional policy at national and state levels since Working Nation, identifying principal dimensions including: an emphasis on network-based, community-led development, industry clusters as the main initiator of growth, and the influence of environmental concerns in generating selective regional responses from governments. However an increasing emphasis on major cities as a source of global competitive advantage has seen the states focus discretionary development resources on the capital cities, whilst accompanying re-regulation of industrial relations has widened the metropolitan/non-metropolitan wages gap. The paper concludes that reinvigorating regional policy needs a balanced and more supportive approach from all governments in place of the present minimalist and individualist approach.