TOWARDS BEST CLUSTER ENTREPRENEURSHIP DEVELOPMENT IN LITHUANIA: CASE STUDY

Margarita Išoraitė

Abstract


This paper offers a review of the best Lithuanian practices in the area of clustering. Currently, cluster formation not only facilitates further economy growth in Lithuania but also boosts new jobs creation. It is argued that clustering is most needed for medium and small businesses, so that they can compete with what they can do best. Clustering, or grouping of companies in a particular geographical environment established to jointly create and sell new products or services, is one of the options for enhancing the region’s competitiveness. A cluster is a voluntary association between businesses and / or science and education institutions and other entities, operating within a partnership framework, whose participants work together to increase the added value created. The key functional areas of activities in Lithuanian cluster management involve information and communication, co-operation, training and re-training, technology and innovation, co-marketing, international development, partnerships with other clusters, etc. Clusters in Lithuania contribute to promoting economic growth and better employment as well as attract new technologies, skilled workers and investment in research. Close cooperation with entrepreneurship is becoming a must to achieve a competitive edge through curtailing costs by gaining new knowledge or technology, creating more learning opportunities, allows risk sharing and R&D development, encourages flexibility as well as helps to reduce time and ease the access to market for innovative products or processes. According to various data, there are currently about 70 clusters operating in Lithuania which range from a few to dozens of participants represented by mostly manufacturing and service companies. A great majority of Lithuanian clusters are still in their early development stages, however, they are mature enough finding their own niches and having an excellent track record in international markets, especially in the field of laser and biotechnology. Apparently, public clusters and their member-firms benefit from making more profits, thus increasing budget contributions. Clustering fosters successful cross-sectoral cooperation, in particular in such promising areas as food industry and information technology, medicine and tourism, laser and engineering technologies, etc. that boosts innovative products and services creation, promotes export and trade along with enhancing the country's competitiveness and repute in international markets. Clusters and clustering is a powerful tool and a critical driver for further economic development and the country's prosperity.


Keywords


cluster; clustering; cluster activity

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.30857/2413-0117.2019.1.8

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