Title: Understanding knowledge and creativity-based development in well-established cities and urban regions

Authors: Simón Sánchez-Moral; Marco Bontje; Sako Musterd

Addresses: Department of Geography, Complutense University of Madrid, Profesor Aranguren s/n, 28040 Madrid, Spain ' Programme Group Urban Geographies, Centre for Urban Studies, University of Amsterdam, P.O. Box 15629, 1001 NC Amsterdam, Netherlands ' Programme Group Urban Geographies, Centre for Urban Studies, University of Amsterdam, P.O. Box 15629, 1001 NC Amsterdam, Netherlands

Abstract: Developing creative and knowledge-intensive economic activities is an objective for many well-established cities and urban regions. We aim to enhance the understanding of that process by focusing on the institutional and local/regional contexts in which the activities take place. We offer a 'thick description' showing the role played by deep structural and contemporary contexts in the growth of these activities. The regions of Madrid and Amsterdam have been selected to illustrate our ideas and method. They appear equally well-established, are well-embedded in the global economy and are both strong economic centres. However, they are also well-positioned to demonstrate that specific contexts have influenced their development. In particular, Madrid's political and economic ruptures seem decisive in its development, while in Amsterdam it is self-reinforcing paths that appear crucial. We suggest developing tailored context-sensitive urban policies. These will be effective, but will also reduce the risk of losing local characteristics that may offer a unique competitive advantage.

Keywords: creative knowledge cities; global economy; competitive advantages; urban pathways; place-based strategies; institutions; Madrid; Amsterdam.

DOI: 10.1504/IJKBD.2018.096425

International Journal of Knowledge-Based Development, 2018 Vol.9 No.4, pp.361 - 385

Received: 03 Feb 2018
Accepted: 23 Feb 2018

Published online: 27 Nov 2018 *

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