Local Economic and Employment Development (LEED Programme)

The Spatial Productivity Lab at the OECD Trento Centre


‌What are the mechanisms of regional productivity catch-up? To what extent does aggregate productivity depend on agglomeration economies generated in cities?

Today, globally, there are two major productivity challenges that OECD countries face: decreased growth and increased inequality.

For the Spatial Productivity Lab, the main issue is how regional, rural and urban policy can help find a more inclusive and dynamic system for economic growth. In recent years, the predominant perspective on regional policy has changed. The new regional policy paradigm focuses on growth, competitiveness and well-being; it aims at strengthening the link between regional dimensions and country aggregate outcomes. The regional policy approach has moved away from compensating lagging regions for undesirable effects of macroeconomic conditions and policies to identifying the ways for each region to contribute to aggregate performance via promoting its (productivity) growth potential.

The Spatial Productivity Lab at the OECD Trento Centre participates in the broader OECD work on productivity. It develops analysis around the concept of “spatial productivity” in co-ordination with the OECD Global Forum on Productivity. The work of the Spatial Productivity Lab focuses on mechanisms that support the catching up process of regions and cities that are lagging behind the (national or global) productivity frontier. It assesses to what extent national productivity can increased through national, regional and local policy measures, e.g. through better policies and governance arrangements that leverage agglomeration economies generated by cities beyond the city itself.

Presentations and background readings


💬 Ageing and productivity growth in OECD regions - Federica Daniele, OECD
April 2019

📚 OECD Regional Outlook 2019: Leveraging Megatrends for cities and rural areas
March 2019

💬 Presentations from the OECD workshop on spatial dimensions of productivity
March 2019

💬 OECD Regions and Cities at a Glance 2018 - Overview - Rudiger Ahrend, OECD 
December 2018

💬 Regional productivity catching up: the role of EU cohesion policy and the OECD perspective - Alexander Lembcke, OECD
June 2018

📚 Productivity and jobs in a globalised world - (How) Can all regions benefit?
April 2018

💬 The contribution of regions to the productivity of nations - Joaquim Oliveira Martins, OECD 
February 2018

💬 Regional and metropolitan data and tools - Eric Gonnard, OECD
February 2018

📚 Better use of skills in the workplace -  Why it matters for productivity and local jobs
November 2017

📚 What makes cities more productive? Evidence on the role of urban governance from five OECD Countries
February 2017

📚 Does it pay to live in big(ger) cities? The role of agglomeration benefits, local amenities, and costs of living
December 2016

📚 OECD Regional Outlook 2016: Productive regions for inclusive societies
October 2016

📚 OECD Global Forum on Productivity library
November 2015 - Ongoing 



📚 Local development, urban economies and aggregate growth in Italy (Italian version here)
April 2019

💬 Fluctuations of employment across age and gender - Enrico Zaninotto, University of Trento, Italy
April 2019

💬 Natural disasters and firm resilience in Italian industrial districts - Giuseppe Vittucci Marzetti, University of Milano-Bicocca, Italy
February 2019

💬 Resilience in Italian Inner Areas - Marco Modica, Gran Sasso Science Institute, L'Aquila, Italy
February 2019

💬 Urban development, agglomerations, and aggregate growth in Italy - Antonio Accetturo, Bank of Italy – Trento branch
December 2018

💬 The Impact of new technologies on jobs and their effects on local economies - Philip McCann, University of Sheffield Management School, UK
June 2018

💬 Regional productivity catching up: the role of EU cohesion policy and the OECD perspective - Lewis Dijkstra, DG for Regional and Urban Policy
June 2018

💬 Building competitiveness and innovative capacity through culture and creativity - Pierluigi Sacco, IRVAPP
June 2018

📚 Ageing workforce and productivity: The unintended effects of retirement regulation in Italy 
October 2017

📚 Management practices, environmental conditions and productive efficiency in the service industry. An empirical study of the hotel industry in Trentino (Italian only)
January 2011

📚 New studies on growth and productivity in Trentino (Italian only)
March 2010

📚 Economic growth and productivity: Measurements and applications - The case of the Autonomous Province of Trento (Italian only)
September 2008 



5th SPL meeting: Spatial productivity for regional and local development
10 October 2019 | Venice, Italy

59th ERSA Congress: OECD Spatial Productivity Lab Special Sessions
27-30 August 2019 | Lyon, France

4th SPL meeting: Spatial productivity for regional and local development
17 April 2019 | Trento, Italy

Workshop: Spatial dimensions of productivity
28-29 March 2019 | Bolzano, Italy

3rd SPL meeting: Spatial productivity for regional and local development
7 February 2019 | Trento, Italy

OECD ERSA Winter School: Spatial productivity for regional and local development
21-25 January 2019 | Trento, Italy

2nd SPL meeting: Spatial productivity for regional and local development
4 December 2018 | Trento, Italy

Workshop: Regional productivity catching up - The role of the EU cohesion policies and the OECD perspective 
3 June 2018 - 9.30 | Trento, Italy

Workshop: The determinants of job polarisation - Lessons from the Dutch local labour markets
2 June 2018 - 18.30 | Trento, Italy

Policy panel: Technology & Jobs, a perspective across levels of government
2 June 2018 - 15.00 | Trento, Italy

Key note lecture: Impact of new technologies on jobs and its effect on local economies
2 June 2018 - 11.00 | Trento, Italy

Workshop: Technology and work - The rise of Cultural and Creative Industries
1 June 2018 - 18.30 | Trento, Italy

1st SPL meeting: The contribution of regions to the productivity of nations
21 February 2018 - 14.00 | Trento, Italy




News from our Partners

Call for Expressions of Interest: Marie Skłodowska Curie Individual Fellowships
Submission deadline: 14 June  2019

The Network

This activity will be implemented in co-operation with national institutions in Italy, interested OECD countries; as well as with regional authorities of Trentino Alto Adige Sudtirol, other regions in Italy and other OECD countries. The research team will include economists and related researchers detached from OECD and other relevant research centres, universities in Italy and internationally.

The OECD SPL Team 

Interested in partnering with the Trento Centre Spatial Productivity Lab? Contact us    




‌ School of International Studies - Trento University Ispat ‌ ‌‌ 

Brescia University‌ 
Swedish Entrepreneurship Forum Sheffield University Management School