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Going for Growth; a Theoretical and Policy Framework

By Peter Nijkamp and Patricia van Hemert

Abstract

This paper introduces scenario planning as a tool to explore plausible developments for SMEs in the Netherlands until 2040. Globalization has resulted in the emergence of an increasingly borderless society with greater unrestricted movement of information, travel, and currency between countries. As policy and technological developments in the past few decades have spurred increases in cross-border trade, investment, and migration, new policy approaches in the economic, political, environmental, and social sphere will be necessary. On the national level, SMEs are acknowledged to play an important role in the economy serving as agent of change by their entrepreneurial activity, being the source of considerable innovative activity, stimulating industry evolution and creating an important share of the newly generated jobs. Entrepreneurship should therefore be promoted, but on a national level, since global development takes places in stages. Government policy, it is believed, can play a considerable role in facilitating entrepreneurship on a national scale. There is however great uncertainty on the scale of future bottlenecks and the economic conditions under which SMEs will need to develop. Scenarios can help map out possible changes and what effect they may have on national welfare.DYNREG

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