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Innovation and Regional Growth in the Enlarged Europe: The Role of Local Innovative Capabilities, Peripherality, and Education

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ABSTRACT 

In this paper, a formal model for the relationship between innovation and growth in European Union regions is developed drawing upon the theoretical contribution of the systems of innovation approach. The model combines the analytical approach of the regional growth models with the insights of the systemic approach. The cross-sectional analysis, covering all the Enlarged Europe (EU-25) regions (for which data are available), shows that regional innovative activities (for which a specific measure is developed) play a significant role in determining differential regional growth patterns. Furthermore, the model sheds light on how geographical accessibility and human capital accumulation, by shaping the regional system of innovation, interact (in a statistically significant way) with local innovative activities, thus allowing them to be more (or less) effectively translated into economic growth. The paper shows that an increase in innovative effort is not necessarily likely to produce the same effect in all EU-25 regions. Indeed, the empirical analysis suggests that in order to allow innovative efforts in peripheral regions to be as productive as in core areas, they need to be complemented by huge investments in human capital.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Economics, University of Roma TRE, Italy., Email: [email protected]

Publication date: September 1, 2005

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