Regional Knowledge Economies

Regional Knowledge Economies

Markets, Clusters and Innovation

New Horizons in Regional Science series

Philip Cooke, Carla De Laurentis, Franz Tödtling and Michaela Trippl

This original and timely book presents the most comprehensive, empirically based analysis of clustering dynamics in the high-technology sector across liberal and co-ordinated market economies.

Chapter 6: Introduction to Key Research Results

Philip Cooke, Carla De Laurentis, Franz Tödtling and Michaela Trippl

Subjects: business and management, knowledge management, economics and finance, economics of innovation, regional economics, innovation and technology, economics of innovation, knowledge management, urban and regional studies, clusters, regional economics


In this chapter we first describe and compare the main features of the two industries that are an important focus of the empirical research of Chapters 7 and 8, ICT and biotechnology. We briefly point out their development and key activities, characterize their knowledge base and innovation processes, and deal with the character of their knowledge flows and innovation links. We will see that, although both can be considered as ‘knowledge-intensive sectors’, there are striking differences in this respect. In the second section of this chapter we point out the main research questions as well as the methodology and the steps of our empirical research. BIOTECHNOLOGY AND ICT IN A COMPARATIVE PERSPECTIVE Two key knowledge-based industries are at the centre of the following empirical analyses for the UK (Chapter 7) and Austria (Chapter 8): ICT and biotechnology. These two sectors have been selected for several reasons: ● ● ● ICT and biotechnology both rely on knowledge as a key input and innovation is at the core of competitive strategies. They can be regarded, therefore, as representative of the knowledge economy. However, there are quite different types of innovation and related processes involved, revealing the multifaceted character of the knowledge economy. They rely on codified, tacit and complicit forms of knowledge by exploiting a widely distributed knowledge base (Chapter 3; Smith, 2002). Both local and global knowledge sources and partners have to be accessed and used. A key challenge in order to stay competitive is in fact the successful integration...

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