Alexander Ziesemer Ph.D. student at the Gerhard-Mercator-Universitšt-Gesamthochschule Duisburg (http://www.uni-duisburg.de) Scholarship holder of the 'Initiativkreis Ruhrgebiet'

Research topic:

The Boston area as a global information hub: regional strategies and concepts for the Rhine-Ruhr-Area

The scholarship of the 'Initiativkreis Ruhrgebiet' (an association of large German and European companies) runs under the topic 'International comparison of structural changes in the Ruhr area'. Five research teams have been put together to work out solution proposals with scientific assistance on an interdisciplinary basis. I am a member of the group which is dealing with 'regional location marketing'.

The background of this project is the trend of increasing importance of information and knowledge. Special emphasis is laid on the past and present processes in decisive fields of knowledge in American metropoles. In that context: Which chances are offered to the Rhine-Ruhr-Area - and fundamentally to regions? What do regions have to do for being successful in competing with other global areas in times of the changing importance of space in the knowledge-society? In which knowledge sectors are American regions competent, predominantly Greater Boston? Which persons were and are very important in the process of developing these fields, specifically in biotechnology, software development and telecommunication?

What this subject contributes to the general concept of "regional location marketing" is to find out potential in usage of location space considering internationally focussed activities and thinking of regional participants. It is especially important determining for the fields of information and knowledge in the Rhine-Ruhr-Area.

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