Title: Economic policy from an evolutionary perspective: the case of Finland

Authors: Ron A. Boschma, Markku Sotarauta

Addresses: Department of Economic Geography, Utrecht University, P.O. Box 80 115, TC Utrecht 3508, The Netherlands. ' Research Unit for Urban and Regional Development Studies (SENTE), University of Tampere Tampere FIN-33014, Finland

Abstract: In the last decade, the Finnish economy has shown an unprecedented recovery, after being hit by a deep crisis in the early 1990s. This paper views and interprets this successful transformation process based on Information and Communication Technology (ICT) from an evolutionary perspective. Although, the rapid pace of the restructuring of the Finnish economy suggests a break with the past, this remarkable recovery was firmly rooted in its economic history. In addition, Finnish public policy played its role in turning Finland into a knowledge economy. Although, a master plan for the Finnish economy was lacking, many policies worked out quite well together over an extended period. Building on education, research and technology policy initiatives taken in the 1970s and 1980s, the deep economic crisis in the early 1990s paved the way for new policy directions, with a focus on network-facilitating innovation policies.

Keywords: evolutionary economics; economic geography; innovation policy; Finnish economy; public policy; information technology; communications; ICT clusters; Finland; knowledge economy; networks; innovation management.

DOI: 10.1504/IJEIM.2007.012880

International Journal of Entrepreneurship and Innovation Management, 2007 Vol.7 No.2/3/4/5, pp.156 - 173

Published online: 21 Mar 2007 *

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