This paper explores the characteristics of high-quality manufacturing SMEs in Gelderland (the Netherlands) and the challenges they face in today's digitally driven 'fourth industrial revolution'. The paper shows that, as a rule, these companies act as a kind of silent power for the region in which they are based: they have strong local roots, but thanks to their narrow focus they operate on global markets. Major concerns for the manufacturing SMEs in Gelderland are the shortage of qualified technical staff, spatial bottlenecks at the business location as well as cost and risk issues related to smart industry investments. With the help of a 'new industrial policy' that is partly aimed at correcting 'transformation failure', it is argued that regional government can give manufacturing SMEs and their localities a helping hand.
|Number of pages||19|
|Publication status||Published - 1 Jan 2019|
- Firm behavior
- Industrial policy