The Pitfalls and Booby Traps of Cluster Policy
Over the past two decades, cluster policies have become a standard instrument of public authorities and economic development practitioners in many parts of the world. This paper takes a critical stance on this phenomenon and provides theoretical arguments that challenge the widespread application of cluster initiatives to promote long-term regional development. We distinguish between and compare two main bodies of thought: the neoclassical view and the agglomeration view. We show that there are no rationales for cluster policy from the perspective of neoclassical theory. The agglomeration view, in contrast, provides a convincing conceptual basis for justifying economic policies implemented in form of cluster initiatives. At the same time, however, it points to major problems related with the cluster policy approach. We identify and elaborate on three essential difficulties, i.e. the proper (1) targeting, (2) dosing, and (3) timing of cluster policy actions. We highlight that the problems related with these fundamental issues of each public initiative constitute powerful pitfalls and booby traps of cluster policies.
|Date of creation:||2012|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: Welthandelsplatz 1, 1020 Vienna, Austria|
Web page: http://www.wu-wien.ac.at/mlgd/
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Starrett, David, 1978. "Market allocations of location choice in a model with free mobility," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 17(1), pages 21-37, February.
- Anne Ter Wal & Ron Boschma, 2011.
"Co-evolution of Firms, Industries and Networks in Space,"
Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 45(7), pages 919-933.
- Anne ter Wal & Ron A. Boschma, 2007. "Co-evolution of firms, industries and networks in space," Papers in Evolutionary Economic Geography (PEEG) 0707, Utrecht University, Section of Economic Geography, revised Aug 2007.
- Richard Baldwin & Rikard Forslid & Philippe Martin & Gianmarco Ottaviano & Frederic Robert-Nicoud, 2005. "Economic Geography and Public Policy," Economics Books, Princeton University Press, edition 1, number 7524, March.
- Richard Baldwin & Rikard Forslid & Philippe Martin & Gianmarco Ottaviano & Frederic Robert Nicoud, 2003. "Economic Geography and Public Policy," Université Paris1 Panthéon-Sorbonne (Post-Print and Working Papers) halshs-00179815, HAL.
- Andaç T. Arıkan & Melissa A. Schilling, 2011. "Structure and Governance in Industrial Districts: Implications for Competitive Advantage," Journal of Management Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 48(4), pages 772-803, 06. Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:wiw:wiwsre:sre-disc-2012_01. 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)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.