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Place, Space and Distance: Towards a Geography of Knowledge-Intensive Business Services Innovation

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  • Richard Shearmur
  • David Doloreux

Abstract

Much has been written about the link between local networks and institutions, about place and territory, and the capacity to innovate. In this paper we set out to answer two questions, based upon a survey of 1,122 knowledge-intensive business service (KIBS) firms in the province of Quebec, Canada. First, do KIBS firms in different regions display different propensities to innovate? If so, this will be taken as prima facie evidence that there is some connection between local context and innovation. Second, can any regional level explanatory variables be found to explain the different levels of regional innovation? We find evidence that geographic patterns of innovation exist amongst KIBS firms in Quebec, although they are not those expected if there were a connection between local territory and innovation. We find that innovation first decreases with distance from the core of metropolitan areas, then, after 30-50 km, begins to increase again, though this pattern is not the same for all sub-sectors. This pattern is in keeping with recent theoretically derived expectations relating to the geography of innovation.

Suggested Citation

  • Richard Shearmur & David Doloreux, 2009. "Place, Space and Distance: Towards a Geography of Knowledge-Intensive Business Services Innovation," Industry and Innovation, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 16(1), pages 79-102.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:indinn:v:16:y:2009:i:1:p:79-102 DOI: 10.1080/13662710902728001
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Lilian Santos & Aurora A.C. Teixeira, 2013. "Determinants of innovation performance of Portuguese companies: an econometric analysis by type of innovation and sector with a particular focus on Services," FEP Working Papers 494, Universidade do Porto, Faculdade de Economia do Porto.
    2. Feser, Daniel & Proeger, Till, 2015. "Knowledge-intensive business services as credence goods: A demand-side approach," Center for European, Governance and Economic Development Research Discussion Papers 232, University of Goettingen, Department of Economics.
    3. Luis Fernando Lanaspa Santolaria & Irene Olloqui Cuartero & Fernando Sanz Garcia, 2012. "Common Trends and Linkages in the US Manufacturing Sector, 1969–2000," International Journal of Urban and Regional Research, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 36(5), pages 1093-1111, September.
    4. David Doloreux & Anika Laperrière, 2014. "Internationalisation and innovation in the knowledge-intensive business services," Service Business, Springer;Pan-Pacific Business Association, vol. 8(4), pages 635-657, December.
    5. Mercedes Rodriguez & David Doloreux & Richard Shearmur, 2016. "Innovation strategies, innovator types and openness: a study of KIBS firms in Spain," Service Business, Springer;Pan-Pacific Business Association, vol. 10(3), pages 629-649, September.
    6. Bruce S. Tether & Qian Cher Li & Andrea Mina, 2012. "Knowledge-bases, places, spatial configurations and the performance of knowledge-intensive professional service firms," Journal of Economic Geography, Oxford University Press, vol. 12(5), pages 969-1001, September.
    7. Elche,Dioni & Consoli, Davide & Sánchez-Barrioluengo, Mabel, 2017. "From brawn to brains: manufacturing-KIBS interdependency," INGENIO (CSIC-UPV) Working Paper Series 201701, INGENIO (CSIC-UPV).
    8. Niebel, Thomas, 2010. "Der Dienstleistungssektor in Deutschland: Abgrenzung und empirische Evidenz," ZEW Dokumentationen 10-01, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
    9. Schricke, Esther, 2013. "Occurrence of cluster structures in knowledge-intensive services," Working Papers "Firms and Region" R1/2013, Fraunhofer Institute for Systems and Innovation Research (ISI).

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