SMART SPECIALISATION IN SPARSELY POPULATED AREAS: CHALLENGES, OPPORTUNITIES AND NEW OPENINGS
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Smart Specialisation in sparsely populated areas: challenges, opportunities and new openings

 

This paper discusses to what extent Smart Specialisation Strategies (S3) are applicable in sparsely populated areas (SPA) departing from the S3 concept’s theoretical background and the experiences of S3 implementation in five European SPA. It was found that S3 has induced a transition in how innovation is addressed, for example, through a more decentralized support system and more proactive approaches to natural resource management unlocking new market opportunities for bio-based innovations. Finally, the research noted a drive to find new governance mechanisms (multi-actor, multi-sectoral and multilevel), in order to sustain human capital development, the most critical resource in the SPA.

KEYWORDS: Smart Specialisation, innovation policy, regional development, knowledge based development, governance
 
JEL: O21, O38, R11, R58

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