The knowledge regions in the enlarged Europe

TitleThe knowledge regions in the enlarged Europe
Publication TypeWorking Paper
Year of Publication2011
AuthorsA. Colombelli, M. Foddi, R. Paci
Number2011_10
Keywordseurope, human capital, knowledge, regions, technological activity
Abstract

Since the Lisbon agenda in 2000, Europe stated the goal to become the most advanced knowledge economy in the world relying specifically on the increase and strengthen of its human capital and technological endowments. However, given the presence of localized externalities in the knowledge accumulation process, this policy may produce distortive and unwanted consequences at the territorial level reinforcing the existing high inequalities among regions. Another crucial feature to be considered is the recent enlargement process of the European Union which has brought on stage new players characterized by a low average level of knowledge activity accompanied by a huge degree of internal territorial disparity.
The aim of this paper is to identify the “knowledge regions” in Europe and to examine their main territorial features. To this aim we first build, for 287 regions belonging to 31 European countries, a comprehensive picture of the two variables - human capital and technological activity - which constitute the main pillars of the knowledge economy. We compute two synthetic indicators for human capital and technology and, on the basis of these two dimensions, we identify 74 knowledge regions, mainly located in the centre and north of Europe. This results are confirmed by a cluster analysis.

Citation Key3276
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