Regional development

Regional innovation systems as catalysts of knowledge seeking multinational enterprises

 

Presentation by Prof. Nigel Driffield, Prof. Jim Love and Stefano Menghinello
Aston University of Birmingham, UK and National Statistical Office, Italy

 

This paper aims to expand the empirical evidence currently available on the spatial patterns and determinants of MNE location in advanced countries, with a specific focus on knowledge-intensive MNE activities. In line with the current state of the art of the economic and business literature, which emphases the role played by regional innovation systems and high-tech business clusters as catalysts of knowledge seeking FDI, we exploit a unique database stratified by country, region and locality and built from official as well as commercial data sources. Three key results emerge from this paper. Firstly, commercial databases can be effectively used to complement official data sources in territorial analysis, thus expanding the range of variables and territorial breakdowns available. Secondly, the design of a multilevel dataset, which combines national, regional and local data, leads to a more complex empirical design, highlighting some features; such for instance cross level interaction between regional and local factors, not feasible in traditional empirical setting. Thirdly, the multilevel analytical framework can link and integrate different streams of economic and business literature, thus expanding our knowledge on regional innovation systems, from both a theoretical and policy oriented perspectives.

 

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