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Regional Innovation Systems in China: A long-term perspective based on patent data at the prefectural level

Author

Listed:
  • Giorgio Prodi

    () (Department of Economics and Management, University of Ferrara, Italy.)

  • Federico Frattini

    () (Department of Economics and Management, University of Ferrara, Italy.)

  • Francesco Nicolli

    () (IRCrES-CNR, Milano, Italy.)

Abstract

This paper focuses on the connections between long-term development and Regional Innovation Systems (RIS) in China. It aims to investigate how the evolution of RIS fits with China’s overall process of economic upgrading. The analysis relies on Chinese patent applications filed to the EPO during the period 1981 to 2009, which authors have regionalised at a prefectural level. Conceptu-ally, the investigation concerns the relative prevalence of indexes derived from inventors’ and ap-plicants’ localisation to describe local innovation activities in terms of emergence, development and reinforcement. The hypothesis ranks higher those prefectures where indigenous applicants prevail, that is, the initiative, organisation and exploitation of innovation activities are foremost local (or endogenous). Results return the possibility of grouping Chinese prefectures into six clusters. On this basis, RIS features appear to diffuse, even while regional concentration of innovation activities is still increasing. This pattern is deemed to fit the process of industrial development in China very well. As it was in the past, RIS benefit from the opportunities that a long-term development strategy provides, but face its limits as well.

Suggested Citation

  • Giorgio Prodi & Federico Frattini & Francesco Nicolli, 2016. "Regional Innovation Systems in China: A long-term perspective based on patent data at the prefectural level," SEEDS Working Papers 0316, SEEDS, Sustainability Environmental Economics and Dynamics Studies, revised Apr 2016.
  • Handle: RePEc:srt:wpaper:0316
    as

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Keywords

    China; development; endogeneity; patent; reform; Regional Innovation System;

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