38th Congress of the European Regional Science Association: "Europe Quo Vadis? - Regional Questions at the Turn of the Century", 28 August - 1 September 1998, Vienna, Austria
The aim of the paper is to analyse the relationship between two important organisations as subjects of innovation, Universities and Enterprises, in the context of a peripheral region, the Basque Country. These institutions play an important role in the future competitiveness and the process of growth of any region, by increasing technological and innovation based strengths. Following a systemic approach, the interactions between both institutions are also crucial for regional socio-economic development. This has been the main assumption on which our empirical analysis is based. Having as background the European Commission's programme (DGXII) "Universities, technology transfer and spin-off activities- academic entrepreneurship in different types of European regions" in which we are taking part, this paper tries to analyse whether the university of the Basque Country is undertaking a proactive role in encouraging the growth of small technology-based firms, as it is demonstrated in other countries. The fact is that in the Basque Country, due to the current University pattern, academics do not have any facilities to forge contacts with industry, so that the constraints found in this interaction process are of special interest for the analysis. At the same time, and as a conclusion, although the Science and Technology Policy carried out by the Regional Government is nowadays changing into promoting links between University and Industry, some shortages still remain, which, from our point of view, should be overcome and are therefore underlined in this paper.