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 25: Growth with inequality? The local consequences of innovation and creativity

Neil Lee


Innovation and creativity are seen as important drivers of urban or regional economic growth. Yet, there is now increasing concern about the consequences of innovation in a city or region. The chapter considers these issues and the potential impact of innovation on inequality. It first considers the link between innovation, creativity and inequality within cities and regions and the evidence on the extent to which the benefits of innovation-led growth are evenly shared. Next, it considers the current academic and policy agendas around creativity and the challenges faced in cities pursuing strategies based on creativity. It argues that while the consequences of innovation may be difficult, the consequences of too little innovation may be worse: this is a classic case of the dilemma between equity versus efficiency.

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