The discussion on regional innovation systems emphasizes the duality of local and global links. While the former enable effective knowledge exchange between regional actors, the latter are considered to provide regional systems with knowledge diverse to their knowledge base. Our empirical analysis of 18 German regional innovation networks highlights the importance of public research organizations for inter-regional knowledge exchange. The broker and gatekeeper function of public research organizations may be particularly important in lagging regions that typically suffer from a lack of large firms who often assume the role of gatekeepers of knowledge.
Regional systems of innovation innovation networks knowledge broker gatekeeper