Spilling the beans…says Stu Rosenfeld

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Dr. Stuart Rosenfeld, of RTS Inc. in the USA, is the author of one of the best, most readable book on clusters – ‘Industrial-strength strategies: regional clusters and public policy’. There may still be copies available.

Stuart has published more than 100 books and articles, on topics such as:
·        Competitive manufacturing: new strategies for regional development.
·        Smart firms in small towns.
·        Exploring the potential for manufacturing networks
·       Overachievers – business clusters that work
·        Skills for an Information Economy. 

Stuart Rosenfeld argues that the most common advantage in locational decisions is access to intelligence – companies can source inputs from anywhere, but they need intelligence. Governments don’t give much attention to clusters in the context of labour markets, but they should because the development of clusters addresses all aspects of an industry.

The dynamics of clusters can be appreciated in terms of:

·          the flow of information – better knowledge of markets, labour markets, technology.
Clusters lead to people ‘spilling the beans’ (a brilliant insight!)
·          ideas – the diffusion of innovation.
·          people – especially increased experience. ‘People meet in taverns’.
·          goods – the strengthening of value chains.
·          services – expanded expertise.
·          capital – support for plant modernisation and start-ups. 

The mapping of information and skills can be a valuable way of identifying the source of ideas, learning of opportunities, finding how to get assistance to address problems, and generally knowing who to call. 

Contact Stuart at www.rtsinc.org.

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