On diamonds, clusters, and regional development

Edward J. Malecki

in Competition, Competitive Advantage, and Clusters

Published in print February 2011 | ISBN: 9780199578030
Published online May 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191724923 | DOI:
On diamonds, clusters, and regional development

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This chapter traces the roots of Porter's cluster concept. Unusually for a business scholar, Porter has made important contributions to local and regional development. It suggests that Porter's ideas are meshed nicely with the emerging focus of economists, geographers, and regional scientists on innovation systems, inter-firm linkages, industry life cycle, and technological change. At the foundation of economic development, in its positive-sum, generative sense, are spillovers and increasing returns, which are exploited by the creation of local synergies among local actors and the integration of external connections into the local relational web. Although this is exactly what policymakers, regional development scholars, and Porter himself would like to generate, the chapter cautions that cluster policies run the risk of creating the illusion that the process is quick, rather than one that typically takes a long period of time to reach fruition.

Keywords: Michael Porter; diamonds; clusters; regional development; policy

Chapter.  7479 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Business Strategy

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