ResearchResearch projects
Regionale Clusterpolitik in Deutschland und in den USA: Ein wirtschaftsgeographischer Vergleich aus institutioneller und politisch-ökonomischer Perspektive

Regional cluster policy in Germany and the United States of America: An economic geographical comparison from an institutional and politic-economical point of view

Led by:  Prof. Dr. Rolf Sternberg, Dr. Matthias Kiese
Team:  Dennis Stockinger
Year:  2009
Funding:  German Research Foundation (DFG)
Duration:  2007 - 2009
Is Finished:  yes

The popularity of the cluster concept in regional economic policy and local economic promotion has been far in advanced of the theoretical appreciation of clusters and the empirical knowledge about their efficiency since the 1990s. At the same time there is an intense decline of the acceptation of scientific policy consultancy in regional adjustment policy. In order to contribute to the reversal of this trend and to gain more social relevance on this way, the economic geography predominantly lacks in understanding of political processes and their institutional embeddings. This can lead to regionally different implementations of the cluster concept in practice. The fuzzy defined interfaces and interactions between conceptual, political and practical space provide important starting points for research. The ambition of this DFG supported project is to describe, to explain and to review regional cluster policy in Germany and the United States of America against the background of interregional and international diverse structural and institutional basic parameters and therein embedded politic-economical processes.


  • Kiese, K., Sternberg, R., Stockinger, D. (2012): Regionale Clusterpolitik in den USA und in Deutschland: Systematische Unterschiede und Lernpotenziale. In: Koschatzky, K., Stahlecker, T. (Hrsg.): Clusterpolitik quo vadis? Perspektiven der Clusterförderung. Stuttgart: Fraunhofer Verlag, S. 119-148.
  • Sternberg, R.; Kiese, M.; Stockinger, D. (2010): Cluster Policies in the US and Germany – Varieties of Capitalism Perspective on Two High-tech States. In: Environment & Planning C: Government and Policy 28, 1063-1082.
  • Sternberg, R. (2010): Neither Planned nor by Chance: How Knowledge- intensive Clusters Emerge. In: Fornahl, D., Henn, S. and Menzel, M.-P. (Eds.): Emerging Cluster. Theoretical, Empirical and Political Perspec-tives on the Initial Stage of Cluster Evolution. Cheltenham/UK, Northampton/USA: Edward Elgar, pp. 295-323.
  • Stockinger, D. (2010) Handlungsräume und Akteure der Clusterpolitik in den USA. Implementierungsprozesse in North Carolina, Oregon und Pennsylvania aus politisch-ökonomischer und institutioneller Perspektive. Berlin: Logos Verlag.
  • Thomi, W.; Sternberg, R. (2008): Editorial zum Themenheft „Theorie und Praxis der Clusterforschung“. In: Zeitschrift für Wirtschaftsgeographie 52, H. 2/3, 73-78.
  • Kiese, M. (2008): Clusterkonzepte zwischen Theorie und Praxis. In: Floeting, H. (Hrsg.): Cluster in der kommunalen und regionalen Wirtschaftspolitik: Vom Marketingbegriff zum Prozessmanagement. (=Edition Difu - Stadt Forschung Praxis, 5). Berlin: Deutsches Institut für Urbanistik, S. 55-81.

Presentations to Scientific Audiences:

  • Sternberg, R.: Existenzgründungen in Clustern.  2.  Kongress des Koblenzer Netzwerks für Open Entrepreneurship Engineering (KOpEE) zur Förderung technologieorientierter und  wissensbasierter Gründungen. Universität Koblenz-Landau. Koblenz, 11.11.2010.
  • Sternberg, R; Kiese, M; Stockinger, D.: Regionale Clusterpolitik in den USA und Deutschland: Systematische Unterschiede und Lernpotenziale. Workshop „Clusterpolitik quo vadis?“ des Fraunhofer-Instituts für Systemtechnik und Innovationsforschung (ISI). Berlin, 05.07.2010.
  • Stockinger, D.: Cluster Policy in Co-ordinated vs. Liberal Market Economies: A Tale of Two High-Tech States. DIMETCI Doctoral Summer Conference, Pecs, Ungarn, 29.06.-10-07.2009.
  • Stockinger, D.; Kiese, M.; Sternberg, R.: Cluster Policy in Co-ordinated vs. Liberal Market Economies: A Tale of Two High-Tech States. DRUID Society Summer Conference on “Innovation Strategy and Knowledge", Copenhagen, 17.-19.06.2009.
  • Stockinger, D., Kiese, M.: Clusterpolitik in Hightech-Regionen: Bayern und North Carolina im Vergleich. 10. Rauischholzhausener Symposium für Wirtschaftsgeographie. 23.-25.04.2009. Rauischholzhausen, Deutschland.
  • Stockinger, D.: Action Spaces of U.S. Cluster Policy. An Analysis of Institutional and Political-Economic Processes. Annual Meeting of the Association of American Geographers (AAG). 22.-27. März 2009. Las Vegas, NV.
  • Stockinger, D.: Clusterpolitische Handlungsräume in den USA - Politisch-ökonomische Prozesse und deren institutionelle Einbettung. Arbeitskreis Industriegeographie, 14.-15. November 2008. Eschwege, Deutschland.
  • Stockinger, D.: Action spaces of U.S. cluster policy. Fall 2008 NEURUS Seminar, 18.-21. September 2008. Urbana-Champaign, USA.
  • Sternberg, R.: Neither planned nor by chance – how knowledge-intensive regional clusters emerge. Workshop "Emerging Clusters. Theoretical, Empirical and Political Aspects of the First Stage of Cluster Evolution" at the Max-Planck Institute of Economics. Jena, 28.06.2008.