The aim of the research project is to develop a methodology for producing innovation indicators that can be used for small-scale regional analyses (below the district level) and that enable a flexible definition of regional units. The basic approach is to establish a georeferenced, micro-level data base for Germany from which innovation indicators can be generated for discretionary spatial units. Micro-level refers to the fact that the data required for building innovation indicators are measured at the level of individual actors (firms, organisations, persons), e.g. the number of R&D personnel in a specific research organisation, or the number of patents applied by a specific firm. Georeferenced refers to the fact that each actor will be localised based on the exact address.
This data base allows to produce innovation indicators for any regional level and for any spatial unit. The research project includes three main objectives:

  • Identifying innovation indicators that can be measured at a micro-level and can be georeferenced, including new types of innovation indicators obtained from digital sources;
  • Developing a prototype of a geographic web-based information system to record and analyse indicators, including relevant dimensions of indicators (e.g. industry, time, fields of technology);
  • Measuring data for selected innovation indicators and perform a first analysis for structurally backward regions in Germany using the prototype.