Mind the Gap: Advancing Evolutionary Approaches to Regional Development with Progressive Empirical Strategies

May 28, 2023 1:31 pm Published by

Explaining the persistently uneven spatial patterns of development remains a central goal of economic geography and regional science. Recognizing that regional development is a process of ongoing change, many scholars now approach the topic from an evolutionary perspective that identifies knowledge recombination processes and institutions as key drivers of change. However, research has not yet fully integrated the differing theoretical perspectives and empirical data streams that characterize evolutionary approaches. This paper identifies how an evolutionary approach centered on knowledge and institutions could be integrated with complementary forms of evidence gathered from a variety of sources to advance our understanding of regional development. Expanding and integrating the evidence base we use to study regional change has important implications for the making of effective and responsive policy instruments.

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