The Learning Region

The Learning Region

Foundations, State of the Art, Future

Edited by Roel Rutten and Frans Boekema

The aim of this book is to present a much-needed conceptualization of ‘the learning region’. The editors scrutinize key concepts and issues surrounding this phenomenon, which are then discussed in the context of recent literature. This unique conceptualization of the learning region presents a state of the art exploration of theories. Leading scholars from across Europe, the USA and South Africa draw upon various disciplines to explain how regional actors perform regional learning.

Chapter 3: Toward the Learning Region

Richard Florida

Subjects: business and management, organisational innovation, economics and finance, regional economics, geography, economic geography, innovation and technology, innovation policy, organisational innovation, urban and regional studies, regional economics


Richard Florida A new age of capitalism is sweeping the globe. In Silicon Valley, a global centre for new technology has emerged, where entrepreneurs and technologists from around the world backed by global venture capital invent the new technologies of software, personalized information and biotechnology that will shape our future. In the financial centres of Tokyo, New York and London, computerized financial markets provide instantaneous capital and credit to companies and entrepreneurs across the vast reaches of the world. In the film studios of Los Angeles, computer technicians work alongside actors and film directors to produce the software that will run on new generations of home electronics products produced by television and semiconductor companies in Japan and throughout Asia. Computer scientists and software engineers in Silicon Valley and Seattle work with computer game makers in Kyoto, Osaka and Tokyo to turn out dazzling new generations of high-technology computer games. In Italy, highly computerized factories produce designer fashion goods tailored to the needs of consumers in Milan, Paris, New York and Tokyo almost instantaneously. Teams of automotive designers in Los Angeles, Tokyo and Milan create designs for new generations of cars, while workers in Kyushu work to the rhythm of classical music in the world’s most advanced automotive assembly factories to produce these cars for consumers across the globe. Throughout Japan, a new generation of knowledge workers operate the controls of mammoth automated factory complexes to produce the most basic of industrial products – steel. A new industrial revolution sweeps through Taiwan,...

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