Regions as Enterprising Places: Governance, Policy and Development
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Purpose This chapter reviews and critiques the recent evolution of place-based entrepreneurship policy in the United Kingdom, in particular the governance of policies targeted at the regional level to promote economic development and competitiveness. The focus of the chapter is the evolution occurring from 1997, when the Labour government came to power, through to the period leading to the Conservative–Liberal Democrat coalition government, which came to power in 2010. Methodology/approach A review and critique of key academic and policy-based literature. Findings The chapter shows the way in which governance systems and policies aimed at stimulating entrepreneurship have permeated regional development policy at a number of levels in the United Kingdom. In general, the overarching themes of enterprise policy are similar across the regions, but the difference in governance arrangements demonstrates how emphasis and delivery varies. Practical implications Place-based enterprise policy needs long-term commitment, with interventions required to survive changes in approaches to governance if they are to prove effective; something which has been far from the case in recent years. Whilst the analysis is drawn from the case of the United Kingdom, the lessons with regard to the connection between regional modes of governance and effective policy implementation are ones that resonate across other nations that are similarly seeking to stimulate the development of entrepreneurial regions. Social implications Evidence of ongoing disparities in regional economic development and competitiveness, linked to differences in regional business culture, suggest the continuance of market failure, whereby leading regions continue to attract resources and stimulate entrepreneurial opportunities at the expense of less competitive regions. Originality/value of paper The time period covered by the chapter – 1997 onwards – forms an historic era with regard to changing regional governance and enterprise policy in the United Kingdom, with the emergence – and subsequent demise – of regional development agencies (RDAs) across English regions, as well as the introduction of regional governments in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, which were handed certain powers for economic and enterprise development from the UK central government.
Huggins, R., Morgan, B. and Williams, N.(2014), Regions as Enterprising Places: Governance, Policy and Development, in Lee Pugalis , Joyce Liddle (ed.) Enterprising Places: Leadership and Governance Networks (Contemporary Issues in Entrepreneurship Research, Volume 3) Emerald Group Publishing Limited, pp.1 - 28
Chapter published in Enterprising Places: Leadership and Governance Networks
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