The Case of Northern Ireland

Michael H. Best

in The New Competitive Advantage

Published in print July 2001 | ISBN: 9780198297451
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191595967 | DOI:
The Case of Northern Ireland

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The capabilities and innovation perspective is not limited to explaining growth processes in technologically advanced regions. Here the perspective is applied within the context of developing an industrial strategy for Northern Ireland. While Northern Ireland has not enjoyed the benefits of regional growth dynamics driven by entrepreneurial firms, the fault is not lack of industrial policy initiatives. Nevertheless, productivity levels are stubbornly low and both innovation and growth have been disappointing. A major lesson of Northern Ireland is the critical role of government policy in aligning the three domains of the Productivity Triad: industrial policy initiatives that fail to take account of the interactive dimensions of business organization, production capabilities, and skill formation will likely fail to impact on regional growth. The alignment theme is illustrated with policy proposals on local capability development and global production networks, industry and university partnering, and work organization and business strategies.

Keywords: global production networks; growth dynamics; industrial policy; industrial strategy; local capability; Northern Ireland; partnering; policy alignment; productivity

Chapter.  9421 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Economic Systems

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