Theoretical Evolution of Growth Poles and Clusters Analysis: Analytical Divergences and Convergences
Conference: International Conference on Applied Business and Economics (ICABE) 2019_At: Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Main Campus, Egnatias, Thessaloniki, Greece, 21-23 October
1 Pages Posted: 17 Jan 2020 Last revised: 19 Jan 2020
Date Written: October 22, 2019
The theories of growth poles and clusters occupy a prominent position in the debate of regional development and underdevelopment. This article aims to identify focal points of the concept of growth poles and the analytical model of clusters by trying to distinguish differences as well as prospects for future analytical convergence based on recent developments in the field of spatial socio-economic sciences. To achieve this goal, we classify about ten foundational publications and another ten recent contributions to growth poles, along with corresponding publications on the clusters concept. We analyse the evolution of the theoretical perspective and recent developments of growth poles theory and practice in conjunction with the most disseminated ideas of the clusters concept and recent theoretical trends. Some of the main findings are that growth poles remain within the boundaries of economic geography, while clusters/industrial districts withhold a multidisciplinary perspective. Clusters analyses are heading towards a growing study of micro-dynamics, which is not the case in the growth poles, which are limited to the meso domain of analysis (industry, region). These observations help to figure out whether there are opportunities and possibilities for synthesising these two analytical perspectives.
Keywords: growth poles, clusters, socio-economic development, spatial sciences, micro-level analysis
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