Reflections on Cluster Policies

22 Pages Posted: 24 Oct 2012

See all articles by Steven Brakman

Steven Brakman

University of Groningen - Department of Economics; CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Charles van Marrewijk

Utrecht University - School of Economics

Date Written: October 23, 2012

Abstract

Economic activity tends to cluster. This results in productivity gains. For policy makers this offers an opportunity to formulate and promote policies that foster clustering of economic activity. Paradoxically, although agglomeration rents are often found in empirical research a rationale for cluster policies does not exist. A brief tour through the literature shows that cluster policies face more problems than is often assumed in policy circles. We reflect on the main issues at stake and conclude that, if not carefully applied, cluster policy may do more harm than good.

Keywords: economic clusters, regional policy, agglomeration

JEL Classification: F400, F500, R500

Suggested Citation

Brakman, Steven and van Marrewijk, Charles, Reflections on Cluster Policies (October 23, 2012). CESifo Working Paper Series No. 3963. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2165789

Steven Brakman (Contact Author)

University of Groningen - Department of Economics ( email )

P.O. Box 800
9700 AV Groningen
Netherlands
+31 50 363 3746 (Phone)
+31 50 363 3730 (Fax)

CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Poschinger Str. 5
Munich, DE-81679
Germany

Charles Van Marrewijk

Utrecht University - School of Economics ( email )

Kriekenpitplein 21-22
Adam Smith Building
Utrecht, 3584 EC
Netherlands
*31-(0)30-2539810 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.charlesvanmarrewijk.nl

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