This chapter argues that new approaches to the geographical dimension of innovation and its role
in localized systems are necessary today, because existing ones either suffer from analytical
shortcomings or have failed to take into account changes in the conception of innovation and in the
organization of contemporary societies. The first section is devoted to the cluster-oriented
approach, which highlights the systemic nature of innovation processes – seen as less and less
technology-based – thereby moving closer towards a definition of industrial ecosystems. Then, we
discuss the coordination-based approach, highlighting shortcomings in the analysis of the concepts
of proximity and their coordination-related dimension. Finally, we discuss the need for a broader
conception of innovation, and the necessity to look beyond its technological dimension by
considering new forms and new sources of innovation, linked to social and organizational issues as
well as environmental questions and the relation with local populations’ desire to express
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