Companies Active in Technology Parks and the Knowledge-Based Economy Paradigm
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Publication date: 2017-02-28
GNPJE 2017;287(1):69–94
The main research aim of this paper is to identify the extent to which companies active in Poland’s technology parks are included in the knowledge-based economy paradigm. The article addresses the question of how such firms fit into the usual set of knowledge-based economy determinants. This question is accompanied by two basic assumptions that may be derived from research reports on economic development policies. First, the knowledge-based economy is a key segment of contemporary capitalism and it may thus be regarded as a pivotal factor of economic growth. Second, technology parks are potentially one of the basic tools to support the development of the knowledge-based economy. In this context, it is possible to hypothesize that technology parks agglomerate businesses that should be the vanguard of the knowledge-based economy. The article presents the results of surveys carried out among companies operating in Polish technology parks. The research focused on three issues: (1) the commitment of companies to R&B, (2) intellectual property rights, and (3) the introduction of product and processes innovations. The analysis of the presented data made it possible to develop a classification of the surveyed enterprises by their approach to the challenges of the knowledge-based economy. The research findings do not make it possible to unequivocally validate the hypothesis that companies active in technology parks play a key role in the development of the knowledge-based economy. In fact, about half of them remain outside the knowledge-based economy paradigm. In conclusion, the paper points to the need to redefine the role of Polish technology parks and their ways of operation.