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In order to stimulate growth and competitiveness, many EU member states have implemented cluster-based development strategies. Several works underline the benefits of policy-driven clusters, but understanding how clusters can create value for their members is still an open issue. This work contributes to the literature by investigating 13 Competitiveness Clusters in Croatia, a special type of policy-driven clusters developed within the country’s smart specialization strategy, using original data from a survey on 250 cluster members. Our results indicate the existence of very different attitudes towards the rationale for the initiative. In particular, while some members are more interested in lobbying activities, others see networking and innovation as the most important objectives of clusters. Findings also show that the evaluation of cluster management, governance and performance varies according to the desired objectives. Overall the Competitiveness Clusters initiative in Croatia did not meet members’ expectations.
Anić, I. D., Corrocher, N., Morrison, A., & Aralica, Z. (2019). The development of competitiveness clusters in Croatia: a survey-based analysis. European Planning Studies, 27(11), 2227–2247. https://doi.org/10.1080/09654313.2019.1610726