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Agents of structural change. The role of firms and entrepreneurs in regional diversification

Listed author(s):
  • Frank Neffke

    ()

  • Matté Hartog

    ()

  • Ron Boschma

    ()

  • Martin Henning

    ()

Who introduces structural change in regional economies: Entrepreneurs or existing firms? And do local or non-local firms and entrepreneurs create most novelty in a region? Using matched employer-employee data for the whole Swedish workforce, we determine how unrelated and therefore how novel the activities of different establishments are to a region’s industry mix. Up- and downsizing establishments cause large shifts in the local industry structure, but these shifts only occasionally require an expansion of local capabilities because the new activities are often related to existing local activities. Indeed, these incumbents tend to align their production with the local economy, deepening the region’s specialization. In contrast, structural change mostly originates via new establishments, especially those with non-local roots. Moreover, although entrepreneurs start businesses more often in activities unrelated to the existing regional economy, new establishments founded by existing firms survive in such activities more often, inducing longer-lasting changes in the region.

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File URL: http://econ.geo.uu.nl/peeg/peeg1410.pdf
File Function: Version April 2014
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Paper provided by Utrecht University, Section of Economic Geography in its series Papers in Evolutionary Economic Geography (PEEG) with number 1410.

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Length: 56 pages
Date of creation: Apr 2014
Date of revision: Apr 2014
Handle: RePEc:egu:wpaper:1410
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