Industrial Clusters, Upgrading and Innovation in East Asia
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Industrial Clusters, Upgrading and Innovation in East Asia

Edited by Akifumi Kuchiki and Masatsugu Tsuji

This lucid and informative book analyzes the problem of clusters in transition through studies of agglomerations at different stages of development in various East Asian countries.
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Chapter 8: The Interaction between the High-tech Industrial Cluster and its Surrounding Universities: The Case of Wuhan ‘Optical Valley’ Industrial Cluster

Bei Hu and Rongzhi Liu


* Bei Hu and Rongzhi Liu 8.1 INTRODUCTION This chapter aims to discuss the interaction between the research universities and the industrial clusters in the development and evolution of the high-tech industrial cluster known as Wuhan ‘Optical Valley’, located in central China. Guided by the flowchart framework, it analyses the advantages of the local high-tech industrial cluster in the optical manufacturing industry, and explores the interaction between universities and industrial clusters in the capability and resource-building process. As a special form of industrial organization, the industrial cluster has played an important role in the regional innovation system. In 1951, the first science and technology park, the Research Park of Stanford University, was created in the United States. This park became the first and most famous industrial cluster, known as ‘Silicon Valley’, and become one of the most successful examples in the world of the interaction and cooperation between a university and the high-tech industrial cluster it was located in. It has been shown by Saxenian (1994) in her book ‘Regional Advantage’ that the interaction between the university and research institutes and the enterprises in the industrial cluster was the primary reason for the growth of Silicon Valley. In China, the rapid development of Zhongguan Village software industrial cluster in Beijing and Optical Valley in Wuhan indicate again that encouraging interaction between universities and industry is an effective approach for enhancing the competitive advantages of industrial clusters. In the development process of the past 20 years, the high-tech industrial cluster in the...

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