Climate change and increasing polarisation between economically successful and less-favoured regions call for novel strategies promoting structural changes in regions. A lot of research and resulting policy recommendations have focused on structural preconditions to explain regional development. Yet, regions develop differently despite having similar preconditions. For policymakers, the question is how to make the best use of the preconditions they have.
This session, therefore, zooms in on the abilities of local and regional actors to affect change in regions. It discusses enablers and hinderers of such change agency, and provides examples from different regions in Europe. This is an important and novel perspective on how to think about regional development and policy.
Furthermore, there has been a focus on the centres of the knowledge economy, whereas the non-core regions need attention in order to address uneven development. Hence, this session focuses on development against all odds.
Introduction: Welcome and introduction to the topic by Markus Grillitsch, Associate Professor, Lund University, Sweden
Large firms in small regions: how local agency deals with the good, the bad and the ugly – Drawing on 10 case studies from Sweden – Josephine Rekers, Associate Professor, Lund University, Sweden
Agencies and their role in supporting path diversification in non-core regions – The case of renewable energy in Schleswig-Holstein – Robert Hassink, Professor, University of Kiel, Germany
Building legitimacy for emerging industries in different regional settings – Comparing two Italian cases – Monica Plechero, Researcher, University of Venice, Italy
Moderated discussion on how to mobilise, encourage and enable regional actors to engage in shaping regional futures – Markku Sotarauta, Professor, Tampere University, Finland