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Camilla Lenzi

This chapter presents a critical and updated review of alternative stylized conceptualizations of regional innovation processes developed in the past three decades. The survey reviews them according to two main perspectives. First, the different approaches are analysed in terms of the relevance and/or balance attached to the cognitive and functional components characterizing innovation processes (that is, respectively, the learning processes occurring in a region and local socio-economic conditions supporting such learning processes). Second, the different approaches are analysed in terms of their capacity to offer conceptual tools to analyse the evolution of regional innovation modes. Future research directions and applications are finally proposed.

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Roberta Capello and Camilla Lenzi

This chapter reflects on the complexity of providing a taxonomy of innovative regions that can be a useful policy tool to support fully decentralised regional innovation policy approaches, such as the smart specialisation strategy, so to mitigate the multiple risks arising from the implementation of innovation policies. The chapter presents the most recent taxonomy of innovative regions, produced through a scientific effort based on overcoming several limitations characterising the existing taxonomies. The chapter also demonstrates how the regional innovation pattern taxonomy, as it is called, is useful to suggest innovation strategies specific to each group of innovative regions aimed at the reinforcement and upgrading of the existing regional innovation mode.

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Stefano Breschi, Camilla Lenzi, Francesco Lissoni and Andrea Vezzulli