Keywords: local innovation systems, governance, competitiveness, Oxfordshire, Stuttgart, Toulouse, dirigiste, networked, grass roots, performance
Local innovation system governance and performance: a comparative analysis of Oxfordshire, Stuttgart and Toulouse
In this paper, we trace the development of three 'ideal types' of local innovation system governance since the Second World War in three highly innovative city regions. The types of innovation governance are dirigiste, networked and grass roots. These are analysed in the case study areas of Oxfordshire, Stuttgart and Toulouse. It is shown that the hegemony of each type of governance changes over time in each area. Initially, central or regional governments played major roles in establishing the bases of the local innovative systems. Later local network forms were adopted in both Stuttgart and Toulouse while Oxfordshire is characterised more by a market orientated grassroots system. The key to the success of local systems of innovation is argued to be their adaptive capacity. The more successful are able to seize external opportunities and deal with external shocks. The analysis of the relative performance of the three changing local innovation systems indicates that widely networked systems grow faster than market oriented grassroots systems.