Significant efforts are being made to improve research and innovation (R&D) capabilities throughout the EU to increase economic competitiveness. However, based on past experience, the most promising innovative actors are often concentrated in already successful geographical areas. EU15 countries perform better than later member states in terms of their R&D performance, and differences in innovation capabilities within member states are significant. Meanwhile, social R&D spending was pushed back by the 2008 financial crisis, and the current epidemic is likely to have a negative impact. Moreover, local economies across Europe show significant differences in their ability to utilize existing R&D performance to increase their population income. All of these processes are reflected in the continuous innovation inequalities between EU regions.
That is why prioritizing and coordinating knowledge-based cooperation between regions is central to the EU’s strategy of overcoming innovation divisions.
The allocation of Horizon to Europe.595.5 billion during the EU budget period 2021-2027 is not a coincidence., Which aims to enhance scientific and technological excellence, strengthens the European research area (ERA) and uses them to achieve social goals and increase economic competitiveness. Such collaborations can be expected to increase R&D performance because knowledge production and innovation are increasingly dependent on the combination of knowledge components owned by different actors. Knowledge is increasingly important in ensuring sustainable competitive advantage and economic growth, but its production is increasingly developed through the collaboration of actors with knowledge in a narrow field.
Unity and geographical proximity facilitate the exchange of knowledge by imposing integration costs on collaborative participants. Knowledge sharing often takes place in high-concentration and dense local area networks. However, on a larger scale, it also implies that the resources needed to generate new knowledge can spread across multiple casts and geographical locations. Thus, although inter-regional links are less common than local ones, inter-regional collaborations infuse new ideas and knowledge into the local economy, thus contributing to the region’s innovation. Actors who engage in such relationships provide a diversity of knowledge. In addition, the collaboration has the potential to bring R&D backward areas and wider EU13 member states closer to the center of European R&D activity, facilitating the sharing of knowledge between regions and ultimately contributing to the development of R&D between regions. To minimize capacity differences.
It is therefore important to identify barriers and opportunities for spatial R&D collaboration and to better understand these networks. For example, under Horizon Europe’s previous version of the EU FP program, cooperation between member countries was closer in 2003-2017, while EU13 countries were involved in the development of less complex technologies. Although the scientific publications that represent the basic research knowledge base are somewhat less affected by regional boundaries, the collaboration is generally between geographically close actors and the more complex scientific knowledge is concentrated in some parts of northern and western Europe.
Elite structures can be found in scientific publishing and patent collaborations, as high-quality scientists and areas with financial resources are more likely to collaborate with each other.
And so on Slow integration Nevertheless, ERC has a dense, hierarchical hub and is widely fragmented in the ways of European R&D national innovation systems. In Hungary’s view, that too is one thing Previous research In terms of the quality of the patents created, engaging in joint knowledge production is an advantage for Central and Eastern European countries, but at the same time further widens the gap of technological development between the regions that can successfully engage in such collaborations.
A K.R.D.K. ANET LabIn early 2010 we were interested in the factors influencing the intensity of inventor cooperation in the creation of patents in European regions (NUTS3, Hungary, districts), and what are the characteristics of repeated cooperation? Was before 2010. Pioneers. Such collaborations require special attention because the general experience gained from previous collaborations will enhance the effectiveness of collaborations, increase the effectiveness of partners, and help transform complex knowledge. At the same time, these collaborations can reduce the quality of innovative results that emerge by creating closed groups and strengthen the fragmentation.
- Based on our results, on the one hand, the role of geographical proximity has not yet disappeared because close places cooperate with greater intensity.
- On the other hand, this also applies to similar technical portfolios between regions, because this kind of similarity facilitates the combination of knowledge components, but also carries the risk of less serious innovations.
- Moreover, cooperation between areas with strong links to common third regions is generally more intense.
- Finally, interestingly, the discovery between regions is only part of the recurrence of recurrences. In their case, the role of geographical proximity is even more pronounced, which is further enhanced by the technical similarity and common cooperation partner region, but only if there is a geographical proximity.
Figure 1 shows the structure of the collaboration network and the groups and communities that can be found on a map. According to Figure 1, most European countries have an excellent innovation center in which collaborations operate, and these centers integrate with innovation systems in other countries. (E.g. Spain, Sweden, Finland, Italy, Hungary and Romania). There is more than one center in Poland, France and especially in Germany, where local centers also stand out. Most of these methods are also for continuous communication (Figure 2): one center is found in Sweden, Finland or Italy, while two centers are found in France (Paris and Lyon) and several related centers are found in Germany.
The two networks disintegrate into well-defined communities in space, some of which connect different countries. So, for example, the community that includes the Penelope states, France and Spain (Figure 3). Communities often include neighboring Switzerland and Austria or Poland, the Czech Republic and Slovakia. At the same time, England, Hungary and Croatia are a community in network with Scandinavian countries. We see innovation collaborations creating a separate community in Italy. Interestingly, Germany is organized into two large communities that do not follow the East-West divide properly, as the southern part of the country forms a co-operative society, especially with the eastern part.
It suggests reshaping innovation collaborations following the fall of the Iron Curtain.
Repeated collaborations do not follow a global pattern (Figure 4). In some cases, communities follow national borders (e.g. France and Italy) and groups of countries (e.g. Belgium and the Netherlands or Scandinavian countries). For others, we find spatially close areas that span countries (e.g., the United Kingdom). In Germany, we see small-scale displaced communities. Overall, when looking at continuous collaborations, collaborative communities are divided into smaller groups. This suggests that collaborations between geographically close areas are more likely to recur.
These observations show a vague picture of the formation of the ERC in the case of patents. The patterns of innovation cooperation between regions show continuous integration, which consistently follows member state boundaries. However, integrating repetitive collaborations into a single PDP remains an even bigger challenge. In this connection, it should be noted that the network of patent collaborations connecting European regions is particularly powerful, and many new researches, along with us, can be found to have repeated links in various networks of European knowledge production. These results raise the question of why efforts to build greater collaborative knowledge in the European spatial framework will not be taken forward in future collaborations.
The article-based study is in English Here Available.
Authors K.R.D.K. ANET Lab Researchers. This study was prepared within the framework of the OTKA project entitled “The Impact of Social and Collective Networks on Performance” (OTKA K-129207).
Cover image: Getty Images