Handbook of Regional Innovation and Growth
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Handbook of Regional Innovation and Growth

Edited by Philip Cooke, Bjørn Asheim, Ron Boschma, Ron Martin, Dafna Schwartz and Franz Tödtling

Today, economic growth is widely understood to be conditioned by productivity increases which are, in turn, profoundly affected by innovation. This volume explores these key relationships between innovation and growth, bringing together experts from both fields to compile a unique Handbook.
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Chapter 28: Regional Services Innovation

Philip Cooke


Philip Cooke INTRODUCTION This subject has been touched upon but seldom reviewed or investigated from a regional innovation and growth perspective. This is curious, given that in many regions and countries employment and gross domestic product (GDP) from services outweighs income earned from other sectors of the economy. However, it would not be untrue to say that services innovation is a relatively minor part of the literature on innovation and innovation systems overall. That is, it is pronounced neither in the sectoral or technological systems of innovation literature nor in that on national innovation systems. One honourable exception to this situation is Ian Miles, who has worked consistently in the field for many years, making valuable contributions to thinking about services innovation, albeit from an evolutionary but non-spatial perspective. Attention will be devoted to the findings on services innovation by Miles and colleagues in the review section of this chapter that follows this introduction. In this chapter, the focus will be on innovative services rather than services in general. It is a curious and complicated category because it ranges from the corner newsagents to the largest global finance houses. Some parts of the sector are considered largely uninnovative, notably localized consumer services. Other parts are considered highly innovative but leave few markers in terms that mainstream innovation systems researchers find interesting, notably (until recently) research and development (R&D) expenditure, patents and publications. Nevertheless, in recent years some progress has been made in the latter regard, for example: services now...

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