Measuring Knowledge Bases in Swedish Regions
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Within the literature on innovation systems, there are a growing number of scholars emphasizing the importance of differentiated knowledge bases underlying innovation activities. The existing work on knowledge bases is largely grounded on in-depth case studies; while surprisingly little effort has been done so far to operationalize the concept in a more systematic manner. In this article, an attempt is made to develop a scheme of analysis to identify the knowledge base of a regional economy. We suggest using occupation data in association with a location quotient analysis, to assess whether a regional economy has a particular strength in one (or more) knowledge bases. To bring the analytical scheme into practice and assess it, we apply it on the county level in Sweden. The results are explained and contrasted with insights into the regional economies taken from secondary sources. We conclude that the proposed scheme of analysis leads to fairly reliable results, and could stimulate further empirical research on differentiated knowledge bases.