Proximity and scientific collaboration in Northern European “cross-border regional innovation systems”

Teemu Makkonen, Allan Williams

Publikation: Kapitel i bog/rapport/konference-proceedingKonferencebidrag i proceedingsForskningpeer review


A novel approach, namely cross-border regional innovation system, has been recently introduced to the literature on economic geography as a framework for studying innovation and scientific collaboration in a cross-border context. However, despite the importance of the topic for cross-border regions, there are no existing empirical accounts comprehensively validating the concept. Here an attempt to shed some light into this “black box” is made by addressing this research gap via empirical material from Northern European cross-border regions. Specifically this is done by applying data on publications, sectoral and cultural statistics together with measures for accessibility and institutional and organisational similarity. These measures are linked to the varying types of proximity discussed in the literature on innovation and scientific collaboration; the impacts of proximity on the volume of cross-border scientific collaboration are described through preliminary descriptive statistics. This provides an answer to the specific research question of this paper: does high levels of proximity guarantee subsequent high levels of scientific collaboration and integration in a cross-border context? Consequently, the preliminary descriptive analysis shows that the similarity of the knowledge bases, i.e. cognitive proximity, on the adjacent sides of the border is an important explanatory factor for heightened scientific cross-border collaboration: if the various sides of the cross-border region are too dissimilar in terms of their science bases, little or no collaboration is taking place between them. However, the presented data shows that there are also enormous differences, which are not accounted for by the proximity measures, between the cross-border regions of Northern Europe in terms of their volume of cross-border scientific collaboration.
TitelRegional Development in an International Context : Regional, National, Cross Border and International Factors for Growth and Development: Revised papers presented at the 18th Uddevalla Symposium, 11-13 June, 2015, Sønderborg, Denmark
RedaktørerIréne Bernhard
Antal sider15
ForlagUniversity West
ISBN (Trykt)978-91-87531-17-0
StatusUdgivet - 2015
Begivenhed18th Uddevalla Symposium 2015 on Regional Development in an International Context: Regional, National, Cross-Border and International Factors for Growth and Development - SDU, Sønderborg, Danmark
Varighed: 11. jun. 201513. jun. 2015
Konferencens nummer: 18th


Konference18th Uddevalla Symposium 2015 on Regional Development in an International Context
NavnResearch reports


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