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Close Encounters: Evidence of the potential benefits of proximity to local industrial clusters

  • Thelma Quince
  • Hugh Whittaker
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    Local clusters of high technology small businesses are of increasing interest to politician and academics. This papers draws on a study of 237 high tech small businesses located throughout the UK. Combining information on activity and location, firms were grouped according to their potential degree of embeddedness in local industrial clusters. Businesses with differing levels of cluster involvement were then examined in terms of market structure, supportiveness of local cluster and their performance. The findings lend support to the role of untraded rather than traded interdependencies in the dynamics of localised high tech clusters. Research indicating compensating behaviour by high tech businesses disadvantaged by location is also supported, emphasising the need to consider not only the location and activity but also entrepreneurial objectives.

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    Paper provided by ESRC Centre for Business Research in its series ESRC Centre for Business Research - Working Papers with number wp235.

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    Date of creation: Jun 2002
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    Handle: RePEc:cbr:cbrwps:wp235
    Note: PRO-2
    Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.cbr.cam.ac.uk/

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    1. Jaffe, A.B. & Trajtenberg, M., 1992. "Geographic Localization of Knowledge Spillovers as Evidenced by Patent Citations," Papers 14-92, Tel Aviv.
    2. Alfred Thwaites & Pooran Wynarczyk, 1996. "The Economic Performance of Innovative Small Firms in the South East Region and Elsewhere in the UK," Regional Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 30(2), pages 135-149.
    3. Hugh Whittaker, 1999. "Entrepreneurs as Co-Operative Capitalists: High Tech CEOs in the UK," ESRC Centre for Business Research - Working Papers wp125, ESRC Centre for Business Research.
    4. Matthew Gorton, 1999. "Spatial variations in markets served by UK-based small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs)," Entrepreneurship & Regional Development, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 11(1), pages 39-55, January.
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