IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this paper

How do universities affect the regional economic growth? Evidence from Spain


  • Javier Garcia


  • Marti Parellada
  • Nèstor Duch


The challenges posed by globalization have led to a rapid increase in the demand for higher education and, at the same time, many countries are earmarking more resources and efforts to foster their population's skills level and knowledge. Nowadays higher education is playing a crucial role in countries' economic development. In fact, higher education is perceived as being sufficient to allow countries to compete in a globalised economy and enhance leadership in knowledge sectors. In the last decades many countries have increased the incentives for and pressures on universities to become more involved in their regions. In response, the universities have developed the so-called Third Mission whereby they collaborate with its milieu in the more direct way. The objective of this paper is to know whether the university presence contributes to encourage the regional economic outcomes. Exploiting the geographic and temporal variation in the foundation of Spanish regional universities after to 1980, we use difference-in-difference approach to estimate its effect on regional economy. The data base includes information for the total Spanish public university system. Our paper contributes to the literature on universities and economic growth, adding more specific data related with university activity. We find little evidence that university presence increases the regional economic growth. We also estimate the effect of the university activity on the creation of knowledge spillover. However, the results vary widely across different regions.

Suggested Citation

  • Javier Garcia & Marti Parellada & Nèstor Duch, 2011. "How do universities affect the regional economic growth? Evidence from Spain," ERSA conference papers ersa10p911, European Regional Science Association.
  • Handle: RePEc:wiw:wiwrsa:ersa10p911

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Kellermann, Kersten & Schlag, Carsten-Henning, 2012. "Hochschulen im Zentrum der Wachstumspolitik: Von der europäischen zur liechtensteinischen Perspektive," KOFL Studien, Konjunkturforschungsstelle Liechtenstein (KOFL), Vaduz, volume 8, number 8.
    2. Arthur Grimes & Eyal Apatov & Larissa Lutchman & Anna Robinson, 2016. "Eighty years of urban development in New Zealand: impacts of economic and natural factors," New Zealand Economic Papers, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 50(3), pages 303-322, September.

    More about this item

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:wiw:wiwrsa:ersa10p911. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Gunther Maier). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.