Knowledge, Technology and Internationalization
New Horizons in Regional Science series
Edited by Charlie Karlsson, Urban Gråsjö and Sofia Wixe
In recent decades we have been able to witness a veritable revolution in the world economy, with dramatic changes in the competitiveness of nations, regions and companies. The most commonly used term to describe this revolution has been ‘globalization’, even if there is no common definition of this term in the literature. In fact, all definitions of globalization are elusive and elicit criticism (Thurik et al., 2013). Generally, the term is connected with the rapid increase in the free movement of goods, capital, people, ideas, information and knowledge around the globe. The shift of economic activities between regions in different national spheres ranks among the most vigorous changes shaping the economic landscape of today (Dreher et al., 2008). Much of the discussion about globalization has been held at a rather superficial macroeconomic level. Discussions at the meso- and microeconomic level, that is, the level of regions and companies, have been much less common, and many have also been biased in the sense that they have only given a partial picture. One obvious example is that discussions on the role of innovation and entrepreneurship have tended to use a narrow definition of entrepreneurship as the start-up of new companies; as a result they have ignored the high degree of innovation and entrepreneurship within many incumbent companies. This is problematic, since innovation and entrepreneurship, generating new technologies, new products and new production processes, are at the core of economic development and growth (Hall, 1999).