ICT, Clusters and Regional Cohesion: A Summary of Theoretical and Empirical Research

24 Pages Posted: 28 Aug 2003

See all articles by Carole Juliette Maignan

Carole Juliette Maignan

World Health Organization - Regional Office for Europe

Gianmarco I.P. Ottaviano

Bocconi University - Department of Economics and Paolo Baffi Centre on Central Banking and Financial Regulation

Dino Pinelli

Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei (FEEM), Milan

Date Written: June 2003

Abstract

The question of the spatial impacts of the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) has animated the intellectual and policy debate for a long time. At the beginning of the 1990s the rise of the Internet brought a new surge of debate: it was argued that the Internet would free the economy from the constraints of geography (Cairncross, 1997) bringing about a more even economic landscape. This contrasts sharply with the popular view of, for example, Silicon Valley, a congested area where world-class ICT and high-tech industries cluster together. In theory, geographical agglomeration of economic activities results as an equilibrium solution of a tension between centripetal and centrifugal forces.

The paper discusses how the use of ICT may alter the balance between centripetal and centrifugal forces and therefore the final equilibrium solution. It shows that, from a theoretical point of view, there are many counterbalancing effects and not unique answer. The question is therefore down to empirical research. Available empirical evidences are then reported and discussed. Finally, the implications for European policies are drawn.

Suggested Citation

Maignan, Carole Juliette and Ottaviano, Gianmarco I.P. and Pinelli, Dino, ICT, Clusters and Regional Cohesion: A Summary of Theoretical and Empirical Research (June 2003). FEEM Working Paper No. 58.2003. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=438507 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.438507

Carole Juliette Maignan

World Health Organization - Regional Office for Europe ( email )

8, Scherfigsvej
DK-2100
Copenhagen

Gianmarco I.P. Ottaviano

Bocconi University - Department of Economics and Paolo Baffi Centre on Central Banking and Financial Regulation ( email )

Via Gobbi 5
Milan, 20136
Italy

Dino Pinelli (Contact Author)

Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei (FEEM), Milan ( email )

Corso Magenta 63
20123 Milan
Italy
39 02 52036944 (Phone)
39 02 52036946 (Fax)

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