09 Dec the emergence of Science and Technology Parks
In recent years, we have seen the emergence of Science and Technology Parks (STPs) (Steruska et al., 2019), and now they have become fairly widespread throughout the world (Albahari et al., 2017). There are different types of parks, such as science parks, technology parks, technopoles, innovation centers, research parks, science-based industrial parks, and university research parks, among others. These initiatives are encompassed by the broad category of Science and Technology Parks since they are aimed at promoting cooperation and technology transfer, especially among firms and knowledge providers such as universities and research institutes (V´ asquez-Urriago et al., 2016).
STPs act as a bridge between universities and industry and are considered to be the best place for technological development (Ziyae and Tajpour, 2016). They are regarded as a concrete model of networks with physical proximity among the companies that reside within them. STPs promote cooperation and technology transfer and assume part of the managerial tasks and coordination duties for companies within the park as part of the intermediary services they offer (Gonzalez-Masip ´ et al., 2019). Moreover, they are seen as institutions that act as incubators, nurturing the development and growth of new, small, high-technology firms, facilitating the transfer of technology from universities to companies, encouraging the development of faculty-based spin-offs, and stimulating the development of innovative products and processes (Khanmirzaee et al., 2018). In an increasingly knowledge-based economy, STPs have emerged as promising mechanisms for driving sustainable development through technological innovation. Based on the triple helix model of university-industry-government interaction (Etzkowitz, 2003; Etzkowitz and Leydesdorff, 1999), these ventures act as catalysts for regional economic development, facilitating the creation and development of technology-based companies and knowledge transfer between universities and companies (Vila and Pages, 2008).
In spite of their economic importance and the fact that the STP environment has undergone substantial development, Brazilian STPs have so far fallen beyond the scope of the literature (Henriques et al., 2018; Silva et al., 2020). Much of the current empirical research about STPs stems from studying STPs either in Europe or Asia or from analyzing STP issues in highly developed countries (Henriques et al., 2018; Silva et al., 2020). Studying STPs in emerging economies seems to be an important research agenda not only to bring about a better understanding of their particular characteristics, but also to observe points of convergence with STP experiences in more developed economies. This study seeks to fill this gap by analyzing the experience of STPs in a peripheral region (other than the USA and European and Asian countries). Moreover, it may well motivate future research to address the performance of STPs in similar contexts (Alon and Godinho, 2017), such as those of the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa). Besides, the position that Brazil has in Latin America regarding the number and development of STPs (Rodriguez-Pose and Hardy, 2014) corroborates the relevance of studying their performance and their contributions to regional development.
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