Chapter 1: The role of smart specialization in providing regional strategic support for establishing sustainable start-up incubation ecosystems
Full access

Innovation policy aims not only to support entrepreneurial activities and regional economic growth but also to influence the direction of innovation. The ecosystem-based approach can be regarded as a novel approach to regional innovation policy. The critical challenge for an ecosystem-based innovation policy is to select a concrete policy framework for supporting and influencing entrepreneurial ecosystems, including start-up incubation ecosystems. The present chapter addresses this challenge. In searching for a cross-fertilization area of innovation policy and ecosystems, we pay special attention to the “smart specialization” strategy, which we argue is consistent with an ecosystem-based view and thus capable of providing regional strategic support for establishing sustainable entrepreneurial ecosystems, including start-up incubation ecosystems. We discuss the policy implications of adopting smart specialization as the regional development strategy in the context of an ecosystem-based view of entrepreneurship and innovation.

Handbook