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Regional port authorities: leading players in innovation networks?


Cahoon, S and Pateman, H and Chen, S, Regional port authorities: leading players in innovation networks?, Journal of Transport Geography, 27 pp. 66-75. ISSN 0966-6923 (2013) [Refereed Article]

DOI: doi:10.1016/j.jtrangeo.2012.06.015


For a regional port necessarily involved in global supply chains, the development of its hinterland region is critical to its long term sustainability. Such development can be fostered by a regional innovation system (RIS), although the risks of path dependency and lock-in may lead to a region decaying. A process for contributing to a RIS is the Regional Development Platform Model (RDPM), the focus of this paper. As a new approach to regional development, the RDPM is utilised and adapted to identify opportunities for potential development in a region. In this paper, the RDPM is linked to the role of a port authority and its potential to drive regional growth centred on its innovation network. Port authorities, by assuming the role of network leader, can shape the regional innovation network and create new development trajectories through their links to various levels of government and the wide range of stakeholders that utilise the port facilities. The inherent tensions in this role and the competing possibilities of path creation and path dependence to create value for a wide network of stakeholders are challenging.

The paper investigates the use of the RDPM and how port authorities can influence development strategies for mutual benefit in this context. More specifically, a case study of the Burnie Port in Tasmania, Australia is conducted by utilising desktop research, interviews, an expert panel and industry roundtable to demonstrate that the RDPM has the potential as an approach beyond analysing the main sources of path dependency in a local region. By following the adaptation of the RDPM, it is argued that the trajectory of path dependency can be interrupted, for example by a port authority, enabling the potential for new paths to be created.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:path dependency, port strategy, regional innovation system, regional development platform method
Research Division:Commerce, Management, Tourism and Services
Research Group:Transportation, logistics and supply chains
Research Field:Logistics
Objective Division:Transport
Objective Group:Water transport
Objective Field:Port infrastructure and management
UTAS Author:Cahoon, S (Associate Professor Stephen Cahoon)
UTAS Author:Pateman, H (Dr Hilary Pateman)
UTAS Author:Chen, S (Associate Professor Peggy Chen)
ID Code:84972
Year Published:2013
Web of Science® Times Cited:17
Deposited By:NC Ports and Shipping
Deposited On:2013-06-07
Last Modified:2017-12-15

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