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Regional Food Clusters and Government Support for Clustering: Evidence for a ‘Dynamic Food Innovation Cluster’ in Alberta, Canada?

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  • Steiner, Bodo E.
  • Ali, Jolene

Abstract

This paper analyzes government support for networking and regional cluster growth in the food sector. It is, to the best of our knowledge, the first paper to provide a literature review of studies on regional food clusters, focusing on key features that characterize successful regional food clusters. The review compares key characteristics of such clusters with characteristics of clusters from other industrial sectors. The insights from these studies on clustering success and the role of government are contrasted with empirical evidence on government support for clustering in the Canadian food sector, specifically in the province of Alberta. The empirical evidence is based on two small industry surveys, one conducted in March 2005, and the second in August 2009. Considering this empirical evidence, we have little support for an emerging food (innovation) cluster in Alberta, and little evidence for effective government support toward food cluster development in Alberta.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University of Alberta, Department of Resource Economics and Environmental Sociology in its series Staff Paper Series with number 99705.

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Date of creation: 2009
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Handle: RePEc:ags:ualbsp:99705

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Postal: 515 General Services Building, University of Alberta, Edmonton, AlbertaT6G 2H1
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Web page: http://www.rees.ualberta.ca/
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Related research

Keywords: location-based clustering; food clusters; networks; innovation; government support; Alberta; Canada; Industrial Organization; Research and Development/Tech Change/Emerging Technologies; R11; L32; L38; O32; O38; Q13;

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  1. Stuart, Toby & Sorenson, Olav, 2003. "The geography of opportunity: spatial heterogeneity in founding rates and the performance of biotechnology firms," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 32(2), pages 229-253, February.
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Cited by:
  1. Hamann, Karen, 2012. "Networks as Drivers for Innovation – Experiences from Food Networks in Canada and New Zealand," International Journal on Food System Dynamics, International Center for Management, Communication, and Research, vol. 3(3).

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