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Article

Alexandra David and Judith Terstriep

In the search for appropriate solutions to cope with ever increasing road traffic, cities and urban agglomerations across Europe are placing great emphasis on new…

Abstract

Purpose

In the search for appropriate solutions to cope with ever increasing road traffic, cities and urban agglomerations across Europe are placing great emphasis on new transport and mobility solutions, and electric mobility in particular. Being located at the intersection of the three constituent sectors automotive, information and communication technologies and green energy, electric mobility is perceived as future-oriented sector. Innovation in the sector not only requires the collaboration and exchange of knowledge, but also an increase in skilled workforces and distinct job qualifications. These demands emerge, on the one hand, through the electrification of cars, which results in structural changes in the entire value chain. On the other hand, growing customer and service orientation further accelerate such developments. So far, the knowledge about the concrete demands for engineers as knowledge carriers and innovation driver is rather scarce. To shed some light on this issue, the purpose of this paper is to discuss companies’ altered demand for engineers in electric mobility and the role of networks (e.g. clusters).

Design/methodology/approach

This paper discusses two regions characterised as traditional automotive regions (Stuttgart in Germany and Alsace/Franche-Comté in France) and the shift in demands of the companies in these regions using the engineering workforce as an example. Electric mobility related companies were surveyed and asked about their current need of engineers. In addition, the survey investigated the companies’ ways of recruiting engineers, their spatial scope of search for employees and the skills and thematic courses needed to solve the lack of qualifications. The survey results are discussed against a background of regional framework settings and influencing factors of both the regions analysed.

Findings

This paper finds that there is a shift in qualification demands of engineers involved in the sector of transport and mobility. Initiated by the processes along the entire value chain, new skills are required by companies. The current engineers are asked to mix their technical know-how with service orientation and knowledge of new markets.

Originality/value

The world is becoming increasingly mobile. Within the last decades, the number of daily commuters has expanded producing high capacities of road traffic. This has brought several challenges for cities and regions. To face them new transport and mobility concepts are of key importance for cities and regions. Along these lines, well-skilled human capital in the form of engineers is needed to expand the concepts with their skills and knowledge.

Details

Journal of Strategy and Management, vol. 8 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1755-425X

Keywords

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Book part

Dieter Rehfeld and Judith Terstriep

The purpose of this chapter is to investigate the nature and range of solutions that can empower and (re-)engage vulnerable and marginalized populations so that they can…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this chapter is to investigate the nature and range of solutions that can empower and (re-)engage vulnerable and marginalized populations so that they can fully participate in the social, economic, cultural, and political life. These innovative social solutions may be viewed as interactive, generative, and contextualized phenomena that are driven by individuals, organizations and institutional actors at micro, meso, and macro levels.

Methodology/approach

The use of Middle Range Theory (MRT) as an integrative approach provides an understanding of the processes and mechanisms that govern social phenomena including social innovations. Middle range theorizing focuses on empirical phenomenon and creates general statements that can be verified by data. As such MRT provides an appropriate framework to investigate social innovation trajectory and dynamics.

Findings

MRT has been used within the context of SIMPACT, a research project funded under the European Commission’s 7th Framework Program and is the acronym for “Boosting the Impact of Social Innovation in Europe through Economic Underpinnings.” The application of MRT to selected case studies has permitted to identify the micro (individual actions) and macro (structures) links in a variety of social and economic contexts across Europe.

Research implications

This chapter provides new insights as how different themes studied in the SIMPACT project (i.e., migration, unemployment, education, gender, etc.) in different economic and geographic zones (i.e., Anglo-Saxon, Continental, East-European, and Scandinavia) have been treated by social innovators in response to problems of welfare, economic exclusion, and vulnerability. The research findings are susceptible to be of use in other countries with different economic, political, and social structures.

Practical/social implications

The significance of vulnerability is well-recognized by social innovators, intermediaries, and impact investors including governments and policy-makers. This requires greater policy and practical interventions, guidelines, and support. However the capacity to intervene is conditioned by financial and human resources. Further investigation about alternative social innovation business models will shed light on the resources and policies that would be needed to foster social innovation.

Originality/value

The analysis of social innovations' economic factors by case studies represents a pioneering effort to highlight social innovation path dependency and building as an effort to overcome the problems of vulnerability and exclusion.

Details

Finance and Economy for Society: Integrating Sustainability
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78635-509-6

Keywords

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Abstract

Details

Finance and Economy for Society: Integrating Sustainability
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78635-509-6

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Abstract

Details

Finance and Economy for Society: Integrating Sustainability
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78635-509-6

Abstract

Details

Finance and Economy for Society: Integrating Sustainability
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78635-509-6

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