Developing new vocabulary in regional studies for changing worlds

Activity: Talk or presentationInvited talk


This paper presents an analytical and intervention model that introduces new vocabulary to explore, describe and build collective futures through shared understanding of complexities facing local and regional developments. This new vocabulary builds on evolutionary and complexity approaches applied to regional studies and is captured as a cluster emergence model that reflects interconnected dynamics of regional developments. The vocabulary and the model were developed through a systematic study of regional innovation systems and evolutionary economic geography as well broader cluster studies and the application of complex adaptive systems approach. The framework was applied to a series of case studies that offered enhanced insights into systemic developments of clusters facing increasing complexity in their contexts. The new framework allows systemic mapping of local and regional developments by capturing interconnected developments through stakeholder interviews. The introduction of new perceptions and vocabulary to describe new complexities facing local communities and economic clusters also allows new dialogue and collective sense making processes to take place. The collective sense making process is important to help stakeholders, including policy makers, deal with the increasing complexity and in their search for new horizons. The paper will present examples from the case studies to show how the new vocabulary facilitates new strategies for regional growth.
Period15 Nov 201816 Nov 2018
Held atRegional Studies Association, United Kingdom
Degree of RecognitionInternational


  • regional development