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Technological diversity and Jacobs' externality hypothesis revisited

Ejermo, Olof LU (2005) In Growth & Change 36(2). p.167-195
Abstract
Recent empirical evidence strongly supports Jacobs's (1969) externality hypothesis that urban diversity provides a more favorable environment for economic development than urban specialization. In order to correctly gauge Jacobs's hypothesis, economic development should be understood as a result of innovations. Furthermore, a relevant diversity measure should take into account the degree of diversity of the inherent classes (e.g. pharmaceuticals are closer to chemicals than to forestry). These ideas are tested using regionally classified Swedish patent application data as a measure of innovativeness. Patent data are also used to reflect technological diversity. The results show that the number of patent applications in Swedish regions is... (More)
Recent empirical evidence strongly supports Jacobs's (1969) externality hypothesis that urban diversity provides a more favorable environment for economic development than urban specialization. In order to correctly gauge Jacobs's hypothesis, economic development should be understood as a result of innovations. Furthermore, a relevant diversity measure should take into account the degree of diversity of the inherent classes (e.g. pharmaceuticals are closer to chemicals than to forestry). These ideas are tested using regionally classified Swedish patent application data as a measure of innovativeness. Patent data are also used to reflect technological diversity. The results show that the number of patent applications in Swedish regions is highly and positively dependent on regional technological specialization, quite the opposite of Jacobs's prediction. This paper raises general questions about earlier empirical results. It is concluded that the size of regions is an important factor to consider, since this in itself may affect patenting intensity and technological diversity. (Less)
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author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
in
Growth & Change
volume
36
issue
2
pages
167 - 195
publisher
Wiley-Blackwell
external identifiers
  • wos:000228962100002
  • scopus:19344372188
ISSN
0017-4815
DOI
10.1111/j.1468-2257.2005.00273.x
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
77cab785-2778-48db-98b1-6d0f28979558 (old id 895523)
date added to LUP
2008-01-11 14:56:35
date last changed
2017-09-10 04:25:02
@article{77cab785-2778-48db-98b1-6d0f28979558,
  abstract     = {Recent empirical evidence strongly supports Jacobs's (1969) externality hypothesis that urban diversity provides a more favorable environment for economic development than urban specialization. In order to correctly gauge Jacobs's hypothesis, economic development should be understood as a result of innovations. Furthermore, a relevant diversity measure should take into account the degree of diversity of the inherent classes (e.g. pharmaceuticals are closer to chemicals than to forestry). These ideas are tested using regionally classified Swedish patent application data as a measure of innovativeness. Patent data are also used to reflect technological diversity. The results show that the number of patent applications in Swedish regions is highly and positively dependent on regional technological specialization, quite the opposite of Jacobs's prediction. This paper raises general questions about earlier empirical results. It is concluded that the size of regions is an important factor to consider, since this in itself may affect patenting intensity and technological diversity.},
  author       = {Ejermo, Olof},
  issn         = {0017-4815},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {2},
  pages        = {167--195},
  publisher    = {Wiley-Blackwell},
  series       = {Growth & Change},
  title        = {Technological diversity and Jacobs' externality hypothesis revisited},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1468-2257.2005.00273.x},
  volume       = {36},
  year         = {2005},
}