Rikard Eriksson: How does the occupation-space condition regional development?

Date and Location

Date: 12/9
Time: 11:00 - 12:00
Location: Frederiksholms Kanal 30, Fæstningens Materialgård 1220 København K


Related regional diversification has gathered considerable interest in both policy (smart specialisation) and academic (related branching) circles, and aims at addressing regional renewal strategies by building on the capabilities already present in the region. While previous studies have assessed this in relation to the knowledge or industry space of regions, these approaches are output based and therefore risk neglecting the necessary resources needed to accomplish regional renewal, especially in regions not specialized in knowledge production per se. To remedy this shortcoming, we focus on occupations since they are based on the work people carry out and the skills, education and training needed to perform the work. Hence, thereby addressing the potential of regions to successfully branch into new economic activities based on existing knowledge resources. By means of longitudinal data on all workers and occupations in Sweden 2003-2012, we map the occupational space of regions to proxy the ease of which workers can switch between occupations that the region is specialized in (relatedness). This is combined with the complexity of specializations to signal either a relative upgrading or downgrading. The changes in occupational relatedness and complexity is then estimated on employment and incomes to assess regional differences in what types of diversification paths that can facilitate regional renewal and an upgrading of regional capabilities.