Scandinavian Working Papers in Economics

Papers in Innovation Studies,
Lund University, CIRCLE - Centre for Innovation Research

No 2014/14: Towards an evolutionary perspective on regional resilience

Ron Boschma ()
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Ron Boschma: CIRCLE, Lund University and Department of Economic Geography, Urban and Regional research centre Utrecht, Utrecht University

Abstract: This paper proposes an evolutionary perspective on regional resilience. We conceptualize resilience not just as the ability of a region to accommodate shocks, but we extend it to the long-term ability of regions to develop new growth paths. We propose a comprehensive view on regional resilience, in which history is key to understand how regions develop new growth paths, and in which industrial, network and institutional dimensions of resilience come together. Resilient regions are capable of overcoming a trade-off between adaptation and adaptability, as embodied in their industrial (related and unrelated variety), network (loosely coupled) and institutional (loosely coherent) structures.

Keywords: regional resilience; related variety; networks; institutions; evolutionary economic geography

JEL-codes: B52; D85; L16; O18; R11

28 pages, August 23, 2014

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