Handbook on the Geographies of Innovation
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Handbook on the Geographies of Innovation

Edited by Richard Shearmu, Christophe Carrincazeaux and David Doloreux

The geography of innovation is changing. First, it is increasingly understood that innovative firms and organizations exhibit a wide variety of strategies, each being differently attuned to diverse geographic contexts. Second, and concomitantly, the idea that cities, clusters and physical proximity are essential for innovation is evolving under the weight of new theorizing and empirical evidence. In this Handbook we gather 28 chapters by scholars with widely differing views on what constitutes the geography of innovation. The aim of the Handbook is to break with the many ideas and concepts that emerged during the course of the 1980s and 1990s, and to fully take into account the new reality of the internet, mobile communication technologies, personal mobility and globalization. This does not entail the rejection of well-established and supported ideas, but instead allows for a series of new ideas and authors to enter the arena and provoke debate.
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Chapter 11: Geography, skills and career patterns at the boundary of creativity and innovation: digital technology and creative arts graduates in the UK

Roberta Comunian, Alessandra Faggian and Sarah Jewell


Over the last few decades there has been considerable research on knowledge economies. Within this broad field, research on the value of digital technologies and creative industries have attracted academics and policy makers because of the complexity of their development, supply chains and models of production. In particular, many have recognized the difficulty in capturing the role that digital technologies and innovation play within the creative industries. Digital technologies are embedded in the production and market structures of creative industries and are also partially distinct and discernible from them. They also seem to play a key role in innovation relating to access and delivery of creative content. The chapter explores the role played by digital technologies, focusing on a key aspect of their development and implementation: human capital. Using student micro data collected by the Higher Education Statistical Agency (HESA) in the United Kingdom, the authors investigate the location determinants and other characteristics of graduates who enter the creative industries, specifically comparing graduates in the creative arts and graduates from digital technology subjects. They highlight patterns of geographical specialization, but also how some contexts seem better able to integrate creativity and innovation into the workforce. The chapter deals specifically with understanding whether these skills are equally embedded across the creative industries or are concentrated in specific sub-sectors. Furthermore, it explores the role that creative graduates play in each sub-sector, their financial rewards and the geographical determinants of employment outcomes.

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