Entrepreneurship, Innovation and Industrial Development: Geography and the Creative Field Revisited
Creative destruction is a central element of the competitive dynamic of capitalism. This phenomenon assumes concrete form in relation to specific geographical and historical conditions. One such set of conditions is investigated here under the rubric of the creative field, i.e. the locationally-differentiated web of production activities and associated social relationships that shapes patterns of entrepreneurship and innovation in the new economy. The creative field operates at many different levels of scale, but I argue that the urban and regional scale is of special interest and significance. Accordingly, I go on to describe how the creative field functions as a site of (a) entrepreneurial behavior and new firm formation, (b) technical and organizational change, and (c) the symbolic elaboration and re-elaboration of cultural products. All of these activities are deeply structured by relations of spatial-cum-organizational proximity and separation in the system of production. The creative field, however, is far from being a fully self-organizing entity, and it is susceptible to various kinds of breakdowns and distortions. Several policy issues raised by these problems are examined. The paper ends by addressing the question as to whether industrial agglomeration is an effect of producers’ search for creative synergies, or whether such synergies are themselves simply a contingent outcome of agglomeration. Copyright Springer 2006
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