This thesis studies the development of knowledge locations: area-based initiatives aimed at agglomerating knowledge-intensive activities in a designated area or city district (e.g. technology parks, creative “factories”). It relates the reinvigorated interest (and qualitative change) in knowledge locations with a number of societal evolutions, and develops a theoretical framework to explain their emergence and development. This framework contributes to better ground the study of knowledge locations within the spatial-economic context and dynamics of its host cities and regions. This study also explores the relation between a knowledge location´s features – Specialization, Urban-spatial integration and Management – and their agglomeration outcomes. It shows that there are multiple pathways to growth and agglomeration: no single factor has to be always present to explain it at a certain moment in time. Moreover, the three factors proved relevant but in different ways, and namely to the extent that they contribute to image formation (associated with the identification of a concept) and ecosystem formation (associated with exchange and learning among tenants). Those processes provide two different paths to agglomeration. Their interaction influences the development of a knowledge location over time and, ultimately, the relation between the location and change in its spatial-economic context. The abovementioned phenomena are explored with the support of four European case studies of “themed” knowledge locations, focusing on audiovisual, biotechnology, design and digital media, respectively.

Erasmus School of Economics (ESE), Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR), Prof.dr. G.A. van der Knaap, Prof.dr. J. van der Borg, Prof.dr. M.P. van Dijk
L. van den Berg (Leo)
Erasmus University Rotterdam , Erasmus Research Institute of Management
ERIM Ph.D. Series Research in Management
Erasmus Research Institute of Management

da Costa Monteiro de Carvalho, L. (2013, January 24). Knowledge Locations in Cities: Emergence and Development Dynamics (No. EPS-2013-274-S&E). ERIM Ph.D. Series Research in Management. Retrieved from