The Spatial Hierarchy of Technological Change and Economic Development in Europe

Bart Verspagen


This paper discusses the possibility of a spatial hierarchy of innovation and growth dynamics in Europe. A spatial hierarchy is understood as a geographical clustering of regions, where important differences exist in terms of innovation and growth dynamics between the clusters. The literature on regional growth and innovation is briefly scanned. After this, a database on European regional growth and innovation dynamics is presented. Spatial correlation analysis and spatial principal components analysis are used to explore the possibility of a spatial hier-archy in Europe. The results point to a hierarchy consisting of four groups: South Europe, East Europe, and two groups in West and North Europe. Growth and innovation performance in these clusters is discussed, and some policy conclusions are drawn.

UNU-MERIT Working Papers ISSN 1871-9872