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By Organisation for Economic Co-Operation a

ISBN-10: 9264007105

ISBN-13: 9789264007109

ISBN-10: 9264007113

ISBN-13: 9789264007116

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Additional resources for Business Clusters: Promoting Enterprise in Central And Eastern Europe (Local Economic and Employment Development)

Example text

Paldam and Svendsen (2000) remind us that “governments and international organisations are third parties. ” Their action should therefore concentrate on indirect measures as facilitators and accelerators. Recommended policy measures The Box below sets out a proposed list of concrete measures that can contribute to social capital building within a cluster development strategy. Proposed policy measures for social capital building in clusters x Undertake research to identify and assess the level of social capital at regional level, through defining key indicators (mutual trust, role of credibility and reputation, belonging to networks, channels of information exchange, participation in associations, belonging to the same universities etc) and undertaking surveys.

The World Bank defines social capital as “institutions, relationships, networks and norms that shape the quality and the quantity of a society’s interactions”, and places the focus on the social dimension. This means that social capital can contribute to fighting poverty and to increasing well-being, thus having an economic impact beyond social objectives. There is an important step to take from studying social capital from a sociological and societal perspective to reaching the economic and firm level.

The results showed that the most competitive regions are indeed the most pronounced users of social capital. Firms with greater innovation capacity tended to show higher trust in collaborators, to exchange information outside the normal commercial links, to rate external information higher, to develop strategic contacts and to consider co-operation as more beneficial than other SMEs. However, from a cluster perspective it appears that these highly innovative SMEs are global rather than local in the social and professional contacts they develop.

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Business Clusters: Promoting Enterprise in Central And Eastern Europe (Local Economic and Employment Development) by Organisation for Economic Co-Operation a

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