PROGRESS IN GEOGRAPHY ›› 2018, Vol. 37 ›› Issue (6): 739-749.doi: 10.18306/dlkxjz.2018.06.001

• Special Column: Young Geographer Forum •     Next Articles

Research progress and prospect on the relationship between industrial clusters and local entrepreneurship

Wenying FU()   

  1. School of Geography, South China Normal University, Guangzhou 510631, China
  • Received:2018-04-13 Revised:2018-06-21 Online:2018-06-28 Published:2018-06-28
  • Supported by:
    National Natural Science Foundation of China, No. 41301109


Drawing from the key research results of the National Natural Science Foundation supported youth project "Study on industrial cluster restructuring mechanism from the perspective of local entrepreneurship—Case study in the Pearl River Delta, China" (No. 41301109), this article summarizes the literature and research results on the interacting relationships between local entrepreneurship and industrial clusters. It focuses on two aspects—the cluster environment that facilitates the emergence and growth of local entrepreneurship, and the agency and strategies of local entrepreneurs in industrial cluster restructuring. The primary research results are as follows. First, successful entrepreneurs in the clusters enhance the entrepreneurial intentions of others. Also, the embeddedness in personal relations with suppliers and customers has proven to exert significant impact on the locational preferences toward the clusters of origin, thus driving the localization of entrepreneurial activities. Second, cluster ecology and entrepreneurial ecosystem should become the focal point of study on the growth of entrepreneurial activities. The dynamic organizational relations with the parent companies are also important for the growth of spin-offs in the clusters. Meanwhile, local entrepreneurs active make and shape the clusters. In the mature industrial cluster in the core city of Guangzhou of the case study area—the Pearl River Delta, it is found that the new-generation start-ups could influence the spatial evolution of industrial cluster by their locational choice behaviors. In the periphery city, Jieyang, the institutional entrepreneurship carried out by the local entrepreneurs is an important way to upgrade and restructure the traditional industries. The interscalar strategies are applied by the local entrepreneurs to build up global pipelines, by which the resources and networks at different spatial scales are flexibly converged and leveraged. At the end of the article, future prospects with regard to the interacting relationship between local entrepreneurship and industrial cluster, both in terms of research context and methodology, has been discussed.

Key words: local entrepreneurship, industrial cluster, cluster ecology, agency, progress