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Regional Competitiveness and Smart Specialization in Europe

Place-based Development in International Economic Networks

  • New Horizons in Regional Science series

Mark Thissen, Frank van Oort, Dario Diodato and Arjan Ruijs

Regions economically differ from each other – they compete in different products and geographical spaces, exhibit different strengths and weaknesses, and provide different possibilities for growth and development. What fosters growth in one region may hamper it in another. This highly original book presents an accessible methodology for identifying competitors and their particular circumstances in Europe, discusses regional competitiveness from a conceptual perspective and explores both past and future regional development policies in Europe.
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Chapter 6: Dynamics in revealed regional competition between firms in Europe

Mark Thissen, Frank van Oort, Dario Diodato and Arjan Ruijs


In this chapter we take a dynamic perspective and analyse revealed competition, market dominance and spatial trade concentration on specific markets in the first decade of the twenty-first century. We apply our methodology to regional competitive trade dynamics in European regions during the period 2000–10, focusing on urban heterogeneity in regional development. We analyse all European regions but especially focus on the sector–region combinations introduced in the first chapter. We will show that over this period European regional development was characterized not only by a catching up of Central and Eastern European regions, but also by a further integration of these regions in the European economy. However, we will also show that this integration did not have unequivocal positive effects for all sector–region combinations in Central and Eastern European regions. We discuss in depth the revealed competition measure introduced in the previous chapter.

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