Innovation and Modernising the Rural Economy

image of Innovation and Modernising the Rural Economy

This publication is a result of the discussions from the OECD 8th Rural Development Policy Conference: "Innovation and modernising the rural economy" which took place in Krasnoyarsk, Russia on 3-5 October 2012. It provides an overview of the two themes of modernisation and innovation, focusing on identifying the attributes of the modern rural economy and showing how it differs from the traditional rural economy and from metropolitan economies. It also shows how rural innovation is a key driver of rural economic growth using patents as a measure.

The second part of the book consists of four chapters that offer evidence of rural regions’ potential to contribute to national economic growth. In addition, each provides useful context for Part I by outlining four different perspectives on the process of modernisation and innovation, and specifically, how they can take place in the rural territories of OECD countries. In each paper, the authors explore the opportunities and impediments to these twin processes and how government policy can help or hinder them.



Innovation in the context of rural areas

This chapter explores several aspects of the debate on rural innovation and offers some important considerations for policy makers. It begins with an overview of the link between innovation and rural areas, with a focus on rural innovations that are either overlooked or not recognised as innovation, or are not acknowledged as having emerged from a rural area. This is followed by a discussion of regional innovation systems and smart specialisation and the scope for applying them in the rural context. The third section explores the need for more adaptive and flexible governance strategies to better recognise and support innovation in rural areas. In the final section, the role of entrepreneurship as a critical stimulus of innovation in rural areas is discussed.


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