This monthly selection of articles has been carried out by Philippe Gugler and Michael Keller, the Center for Competitiveness, University of Fribourg.
Previous selection of articles:
Science Parks and the Co-location of High-tech Small- and Medium-sized Firms in China’s Shenzhen
By : Fangfang Cheng, Frank van Oort, Stan Geertman and Pieter Hooimeijer. Urban Studies, Volume 51, Issue 5, Pages 1073-1089, 2014.
Abstract: « Science parks (SPs) have received special attention as a policy tool to facilitate localised economic growth by attracting high-tech firms, especially small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). The effectiveness of this strategy has been called into question. Empirical studies suggest that the benefits of SPs for high-tech firms are limited. While this debate is mainly concentrated in the US and Europe, this paper sheds light on the role of SPs in China. It is found that, despite the presence of alternatives, the locations of high-tech SMEs in the region of Shenzhen are determined by hierarchically structured and governed SPs. This finding supports the notion that SPs can play a positive role in attracting high-tech SMEs. Moreover, these effects occur in the relatively unexplored Chinese context of increasingly liberalised but governed market circumstances, where a mature innovation system is still lacking.» [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]
Proximity and scientific collaboration: Evidence from the global wine industry
By : Lorenzo Cassi, Andrea Morrison and Roberta Rabellotti. Papers in Evolutionary Economic Geography # 14.05, 2014.
Abstract: « International collaboration among researchers is a far from linear and straightforward process. Scientometric studies provide a good way of understanding why and how international research collaboration occurs and what are its costs and benefits. Our study investigates patterns of international scientific collaboration in a specific field: wine related research. We test a gravity model that accounts for geographical, cultural, commercial, technological, structural and institutional differences among a group of Old World (OW) and New World (NW) producers and consumers. Our findings confirm the problems imposed by geographical and technological distance on international research collaboration. Furthermore, they show that similarity in trade patterns has a positive impact on international scientific collaboration. We also find that international research collaboration is more likely among peers, in other words, among wine producing countries that belong to the same group, e.g. OW producers or newcomers to the wine industry.» [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHORS]
Transit Service, Physical Agglomeration and Productivity in US Metropolitan Areas
By : Daniel G. Chatman and Robert B. Noland. Urban Studies, Volume 51, Issue 5, Pages 917-937, 2014.
Abstract: « Public transit improvements could cause more clustered and higher-density employment and enable urban growth, giving rise to agglomeration economies by improving labour market accessibility, increasing information exchange and facilitating industrial specialisation. Using data on US metropolitan areas, this paper traces the links from transit service to central city employment density, urbanised area employment density and population; and from these physical agglomeration measures to average wages and per capita GMP. Significant indirect productivity effects of transit service are found. For example, in the case of central city employment density, estimated wage increases range between $1.5 million and $1.8 billion per metropolitan area yearly for a 10 per cent increase in transit seats or rail service miles per capita. Firms and households likely receive unanticipated agglomeration benefits from transit-induced densification and growth, and current benefit–cost evaluations may therefore underestimate the benefits of improving transit service, particularly in large cities with existing transit networks.» [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHORS]
The Role of Territorial Capital in Local Economic Growth: Evidence from Italy
By : Giovanni Perucca. European Planning Studies, Volume 22, Issue 3, Pages 537-562, 2014.
Abstract: « Territorial capital is defined as the system of territorial assets of economic, cultural, social and environmental nature that ensures the development potential of places. The potential of this concept resides in the recognition of possible interactions between factors of different nature. So far, however, very few studies have focused on the empirical verification of the links between territorial capital and economic growth. This work is devoted to the analysis of the relationship between economic growth and territorial capital in Italian NUTS3 regions between 1999 and 2008. The distribution of territorial assets across regions points out the huge gap between Italian macro-areas. These divergences do not clearly reproduce the differentials in GDP growth. The second part of the analysis is focused on the joint effect of the territorial capital components on the regional economic performance. Our findings emphasize the role of some endogenous factors in explaining the differentiation of regional growth patterns. Moreover, they point out the importance of soft assets in correspondence of an external shock, as the one represented by the recent financial crisis.» [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]
Smartmentality: The Smart City as Disciplinary Strategy
By : Alberto Vanolo. Urban Studies, Volume 51, Issue 5, Pages 883-898, 2014.
Abstract: « The paper analyses the concept of the smart city in critical perspective, focusing on the power/knowledge implications for the contemporary city. On the one hand, smart city policies support new ways of imagining, organising and managing the city and its flows; on the other, they impress a new moral order on the city by introducing specific technical parameters in order to distinguish between the ‘good’ and ‘bad’ city. The smart city discourse may therefore be a powerful tool for the production of docile subjects and mechanisms of political legitimisation. The paper is largely based on theoretical reflections and uses smart city politics in Italy as a case study. The paper analyses how the smart city discourse proposed by the European Union has been reclassified to produce new visions of the ‘good city’ and the role of private actors and citizens in the management of urban development.» [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]
Spatio-temporal processes of knowledge creation
By : Johanna Hautala and Jussi S. Jauhiainen. Research Policy, Volume 43, Issue 4, Pages 655–668, 2014.
Abstract: « This article presents a novel spatio-temporal framework for studying knowledge creation. To achieve this, we analyzed the recent literature on space, time and knowledge and conducted an empirical study. The intensive case was about four international distinguished university research groups in Finland in the fields of technology and science. Object, communicative and cognitive spaces with linear and relational times were used as tools for empirical analysis. Combinations of space and time bring out different aspects of knowledge. Knowledge processes of progressing knowledge (time-space), creating distinguished knowledge (space-time), and path-taking and bundling knowledge (spacetime) bind spaces and times closely together. Besides academy, the spatio-temporal framework can be applied to study the knowledge creation processes in art, business and local communities, for example.» [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHORS]
Superstar inventors—Towards a people-centric perspective on the geography of technological renewal in the multinational corporation
By : Katarina Blomkvist, Philip Kappen and Ivo Zander. Research Policy, Volume 43, Issue 4, Pages 669–682, 2014.
Abstract: « This paper develops a people-centric perspective on the geographical dispersion of technological renewal in the multinational corporation (MNC). We contend that a large proportion of all foreign technological advancements can be attributed to a handful of individual inventors, suggesting a blockbuster effect of subsidiary technological development. This suggests that analyses carried out at the subsidiary or firm level disguise significant yet largely unexplored variation in the technological contributions made by individual members of these foreign units. To support this proposition, the paper draws upon an original data set that comprises all of the advanced foreign subsidiaries of 21 Swedish MNCs between 1893 and 2008, and follows their patenting activity in order to document the distribution of inventive activity, both across and within individual subsidiaries. The findings at the subsidiary level show that the distribution of technological activity and contribution to the overall multinational group is significantly skewed; the paper then empirically explores the assumption that a similar distribution also applies at the level of individual inventors. The results point to a pattern whereby most inventors make only occasional and limited technological contributions and, instead, more significant numbers of new technological discoveries are attributable to a select group of exceptionally inventive individuals. In the light of the results, we suggest the fruitfulness of applying a people-centric perspective on the sources of sustained competitive advantage of the MNC, the management of geographically dispersed capabilities in the multinational network, and the geographical sources of technological renewal in the MNC.» [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHORS]
Sustainability and the Anchoring of Capital: Negotiations Surrounding Two Major Urban Projects in Switzerland
By : Thierry Theurillat and Olivier Crevoisier. Regional Studies, Volume 48, Issue 3, Pages 501-515, 2014.
Abstract: « This article deals with the anchoring of mobile financial capital in the city and urban sustainability. Illustrated by a case study in the Swiss context, it develops the theory that new forms of negotiation are appearing around urban projects. Development/construction firms are playing a central role: they are capable of evaluating and translating the multiple dimensions of a project and certain sustainability challenges into financial terms, in a way that permits the anchoring of capital in the city. In parallel, the issue of sustainability depends greatly on the capacity of the local actors to negotiate with the promoters of urban projects.» [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHORS]
Local Systems’ Strategies Copying with Globalization: Collective Local Entrepreneurship
By : Giovanni Covi. MPRA Paper No. 53334, February 2014.
Abstract: « The paper aims at investigating the possible trajectories of regional clusters (industrial districts or local systems) in order to depict feasible strategies to cope with globalization. First, same relevant stylized facts on the new structure of global market are presented in order to illustrate the new competitive framework the SME must face. Second, the concept of ‘complete productive process’ is introduced to characterize the special setting is necessary for the survival of the regional systems of SME. Said briefly, a local cluster needs to co-produce values, capabilities, institutions: its very identity. Since local systems are essentially ‘cognitive systems’, they need to go global not as single firm but as a system. To accomplish this difficult task they must resort to a collective and cooperative behaviour. The paper tries to fill this gap introducing the concept of ‘Collective Local Entrepreneurship’, a reference point, a device to whom anchor the strategic pragmatism necessary to regional clusters to cope with globalization. The renewal of the local ‘ecosystems’ within the international networks (at all different levels) appears to be a general objective. A strong public-private partnership emerges as a strategic commitment. In this perspective the paper tries to capture, as a conclusion, the potential dynamics of the four evolutionary trajectories, which the regional clusters are called upon to deal with.» [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]
Collective Knowledge Management
By : Haruo H. Horaguchi. Edward Elgar Publishing Limited, Cheltenham, UK, 2014.
Abstract: « Human beings create knowledge as a result of interaction with others. This book is devoted to the idea that collective knowledge management can be strategically promoted through these interactions in order to enhance a firm’s competitiveness.
Haruo H. Horaguchi explores a new perspective of knowledge management as an eco-system, a theory that explains why Japanese multinational enterprises lead the way for innovation in the 21st century. While the concept of personal knowledge through tacit knowing describes how knowledge is understood as input for individuals, the concept of collective knowledge management contributes to the creation of intellectual resources for firms. This book provides a critical assessment of the classic theories of innovation and an intensive empirical study on industrial agglomeration and collective intelligence. It then goes on to offer a new theory of management.
This book will appeal to academics and students of business and management, business administration, sociology and organizational behavior. It will also be of great interest to managers and business-owners looking at new methods of promoting knowledge in the workforce.» [ABSTRACT FROM EDITORS]