METHODOLOGICAL PRINCIPLES FOR CHOOSING POTENTIAL AREAS OF SMART SPECIALIZATION OF THE REGIONS OF UKRAINE

Section "Economics": Economic and legal problems of regional development

Abstract

The elaboration of regional development strategies using the methodology of smart specialization is one of the most important fields of modern economics and economic practice. The aim of the article is to improve the methodological basis for selecting potential areas of smart specialization at the meso level, based on Ukrainian and foreign experience in regional development strategy. A critical review of the regional development strategies up to 2027 elaborated in Ukraine gave ground to state that the most characteristic negative feature of the vast majority of these strategies is a certain pattern in the choice of areas of smart specialization. In such strategies, the nominal values prevail over reality when planning further socio-economic development and their practical implementation is accompanied by the risk of preserving the existing structure of the regional economies, and thus it will not be a proper impetus to increase the innovation potential of the latter. The results of calculations conducted according to the methodology of the European Commission showed that the level of innovation of Ukraine is the lowest among the EU countries. Despite the presence of nominally sufficient scientific potential for the development of innovations, the level of its implementation in Ukraine is low primarily due to lack of funding for research and development. The results of the study of methodological practice in finding areas of smart specialization in EU regions, in particular Poland, as well as the European Commission’s proposals covered on S3Platform, formed the basis for the author’s methodological approach to selecting potential areas of smart specialization at the meso level. This approach includes seven stages and involves vertical, horizontal and sectoral retrospective statistical analysis, implementation of medium- and long-term foresight, as well as expert assessments and their generalization. As a result, all types of economic activity (in terms of individual sectors, segments, industries) of a region are divided into three groups according to the degree of their prospects. The practical application of the elaborated approach should result in modernization of the structure of the national economy in the regional context in favor of those areas that have actual or prospective innovation potential and are the most effective and competitive, and their development trends correlate with the targets of Ukraine’s regional development strategy.

Keywords

regional strategies, types of economic activity, innovation, areas of smart specialization

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2020-08-25