Table of Contents

The Dynamics of Regions and Networks in Industrial Ecosystems

The Dynamics of Regions and Networks in Industrial Ecosystems

Edited by Matthias Ruth and Brynhildur Davidsdottir

Industrial ecology provides a rigorous and comprehensive description of human production and consumption processes in the larger context of environmental and socioeconomic change. This volume offers methodologies for such descriptions, with contributions covering both basic and advanced analytical concepts and tools to explore the dynamics of industrial ecosystems, concentrating specifically on regions and networks.

Chapter 10: Understanding and Shaping the Evolution of Sustainable Large-Scale Socio-Technical Systems

Igor Nikolic, Gerard P.J. Dijkema and Koen H. van Dam

Subjects: business and management, organisation studies, economics and finance, industrial organisation, regional economics, transport, environment, ecological economics, environmental sociology, transport, urban and regional studies, regional economics, transport


Igor Nikolic, Gerard P.J. Dijkema and Koen H. van Dam 10.1 INTRODUCTION The focus of this chapter is on the creation of a framework for modeling and simulating the growth, evolution and dynamics of regional industrial clusters. Why is this relevant? Currently the world is experiencing dramatic and rapid change. Regional industrial clusters dominated by process industry, such as the Rotterdam-Rijnmond area and Groningen Seaports in the Netherlands, the German Ruhr Area, the Antwerp region in Belgium, Le Havre in France and Teesside in the United Kingdom that largely evolved in the twentieth century must find a way to make timely adaptations to novel and stringent ecologic, economic and supply chain pressures and demands. These include, amongst others, the nascent reduced availability of cheap fossil feedstock, dwindling of suitable metal ore resources, dilution of metal stock, limits to or penalties on CO2 emissions, and global competition for feedstock and commodity, specialties and pharmaceuticals markets (Verhoef 2004; Dijkema 2004). The objective of this chapter is the creation of a framework that will support systematic and rational shaping of sustainable networked industrial systems on a regional scale. One may also understand this work as a plea to recognize and study the effects of the decentralization of decisions that determine network growth. The work presented in this chapter represents the theoretical background of a decision support tool developed, amongst others, in the course of the CostaDue project (Dijkema and Stikkelman 2006). Due to the confidential nature of the underlying project data, all specific...

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