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Metropolitan Regions as a Factor Shaping the Dynamics of Collective Technological Knowledge

Collective technological knowledge is the result of systemic dynamics that make possible the access, accumulation and distribution of interdependent bits of localized technological knowledge among complementary actors. Interactive behaviors and shared learning are the determinants of such collective character highlighting the need for effective communication opportunities and devices for the generation and diffusion of technological knowledge. Technological communication relies upon favorable social and institutional conditions and emerges as the crucial factor in the generation and distribution of localized technological knowledge. Against the traditional argument of geographical proximity conceived in terms of physical proximity that reduces physical costs (such as transport costs), it is argued that in metropolitan regions the chances and actual implementation of technological communication find in social proximity the suitable factor enhancing the quality of social and personal relations, hence low free-riding, reciprocity and thus repeated interactions based on trust. Therefore metropolitan regions account for more reliable and valuable communication at the industrial and scientific levels that favor the dynamics of collective knowledge. Providing a far more positive social and institutional context making for the dynamics of collective technological knowledge, metropolitan regions emerge as a key element in policy issues for the configuration of effective regional innovation systems.

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Paper provided by University of Turin in its series Department of Economics and Statistics Cognetti de Martiis LEI & BRICK - Laboratory of Economics of Innovation "Franco Momigliano", Bureau of Research in Innovation, Complexity and Knowledge, Collegio Carlo Alberto. WP series with number 200207.

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Length: 21 pages
Date of creation: Oct 2002
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:uto:labeco:200207
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