Innovation and Regional Socio-Economic Development - Evidence from the Finnish Local Administrative Units (1)
It is often argued that innovation plays a key role in the economic growth of regions. Therefore, the impacts of innovation on the socio-economic development of regions have been widely discussed in previous studies, but with divergent areal coverage, methods, and datasets. As a point for departure, these relationships redrawn from international literature are tested here with a single dataset from Finnish local administrative units and with coherent methods. As there does not seem to be a generally accepted indicator for innovation which can claim to be superior, despite the growing literature on the subject, research and development (R&D), and patent statistics are used in this paper to represent innovation activity. The significant, strong, and positive relationship between innovation and traditional socio-economic variables is verified using Finnish regions.