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Free Content Turning Point: Rural Innovation Ecosystems and Leading Wellbeing

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Innovation ecosystems are an emerging concept to describe place-based clusters of companies and other organisations, interacting for growth, development and sustainability, often focused around an ‘anchor institution’. Most successful examples operate in urban contexts. Literature on rural innovation suggests that the nature and needs of rural businesses can be different. This article reviews some of the key themes, including skill needs, aspirations and motivations of rural professionals, suitability of anchor institutions and leadership. Rural areas are known to have different demographic structures from urban ones. In particular, the tendency to attract highly qualified, but growth-reluctant, professionals, as ‘in-migrants’ is discussed. We hypothesise that a successful rural innovation eco-system should focus more on sustainability, wellbeing and balance, rather than primarily on ambition and growth. The needs of individuals may also be more important than those of business units and a focus on skills development could be desirable.
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Keywords: Anchor institutions; Eco-systems; Innovation; Leadership; Rural; Sustainability

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 01 December 2017

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  • The Journal of Corporate Citizenship focuses explicitly on integrating theory about corporate citizenship with management practice. This means that the journal provides a forum in which the tensions and practical realities of making corporate citizenship real are addressed in a reader-friendly, yet conceptually and empirically rigorous format. The Journal of Corporate Citizenship aims to publish the best ideas integrating the theory and practice of corporate citizenship in a format that is readable, accessible, engaging, interesting and useful for readers in business, consultancy, government, NGOs and academia. This peer-reviewed journal encourages practical, theoretically sound, and (when relevant) empirically rigorous manuscripts that address real-world implications of corporate citizenship in global and local contexts.
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