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Abstract

This study explores the co-evolutionary triangle of crisis, innovation, and change management in less-developed local business ecosystems. It takes as a case study the region of Eastern Macedonia and Thrace-one of the least developed regional socioeconomic business ecosystems in Greece and the EU-and tries to find out the correlation between the different aspects of this "global crisis-innovation-change management" triangle from the perspective of a sample of micro and small enterprises operating in this ecosystem. To this end, the authors conducted a qualitative, introductory, field research, finding that there is a significant gap between the predominant scientific view of regional underdevelopment and the perception of the people of everyday business practice. This article supports that this deficient perception is one of the determining factors of the delayed development for this regional entrepreneurial ecosystem.
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... For the most part in these regions, ecosystems show significant dependence on activities of the primary sector. There is no highly developed local and interregional infrastructure (tangible and intangible), limited research and development activity as well as a lack of substantial influence from the local or regional administration policy mechanisms (Vlados, Katimertzopoulos, Chatzinikolaou, Deniozos and Koutroukis, 2019). ...
... Based on several scientific researches that have been undertaken in this context, the following causes have been identified as the main factor constraint for the development of companies and their ecosystems: a) the increased transport costs (expressed either in financial or time terms) as a result of the significant distance from the main population centers and economic activity, and b) the lack of concentration advantages (external economies of scale) enjoyed by the less remote areas. Distance is therefore affecting competitiveness both directly and indirectly, as businesses are less able to enjoy the benefits of creating business ecosystems (Katimertzopoulos, Vlados and Koutroukis, 2020;Vlados, Katimertzopoulos, Chatzinikolaou, Deniozos and Koutroukis, 2019). ...
... In these regions there is usually dependence on activities of the primary sector. Moreover, there is no highly developed local and interregional infrastructure, as limited activity in the field of research and development may be find, including the lack of influence of the broader political governance mechanisms (local or regional) (Katimertzopoulos, Vlados and Koutroukis, 2020;Vlados, Katimertzopoulos, Chatzinikolaou, Deniozos and Koutroukis, 2019). ...
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... Different central or regional governments could follow the approach of the ILDI as a development policy mechanism focusing on the enhancement of the local or regional business ecosystem. In this context, Vlados et al. (2019) have suggested that this mechanism could work for the case of the less developed Greek region of Eastern Macedonia and Thrace and its small and medium-sized enterprises. For a comprehensive view of the actors that the ILDI can interconnect, the triple helix theory of the co-evolution of the institutions of universities, government policy, and businesses in the regional context can also be useful. ...
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