The role of parks of science and technology in territorial dynamics of innovation: The case of Madan Park (Almada, Portugal)

José Afonso Teixeira, António Pombeiro

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review


The links between the academic sector and the business community are the basis of the continuous development of innovative activities and technologies. In turn, the transfer of this knowledge enables economic agents to sustain innovation dynamics. Science Parks (SPs) are territorial infrastructures based on clusters and linear models of innovation that leverage spatial proximity and "agglomeration" forces as key factors to accelerate innovation. Increasingly, they assume the role of "connectors" with the global innovation ecosystem. In Europe, SPs were influenced by EU innovation policies. Portugal's accession to the EEC (1986) paved the way to overcoming its scientific and technological delay. The first SP (Tagus Park) appeared in 1993 in Lisbon Metropolitan Area. It still accounts for almost half of the employment of the two dozen Portuguese SPs, which are home to some 1100 firms and 16500 jobs. On the whole, Portuguese SPs are young, poorly structured and they show difficulties in assuming the role of boosters of their surrounding economies. In this paper, the characterization of national SPs is done based on information from TecParques and directly obtained from SPs. Madan Parque (Almada), located in Lisbon Metropolitan Area, a region with unique potentialities in the national context, is put forward as a case study. In particular, this SP benefits from the proximity to the Campus of FCT NOVA University and the availability of own land with tax exemption on activities with a strong R & D prevalence. The concept "walk in distance" is a qualifying and differentiating element, which promotes the relationship between the park, the scientific research entity (Uninova) and the FCT NOVA Campus. We used a methodology that combined interviews with project managers with questionnaires to more than 55% of the technology-based firms located in the park. Our study lays down some of the problems found, but concludes that the Madan Park has the conditions to become an engine of the regional economy and a national reference.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAtas da XLIV Reunión de Estudios Regionales
Subtitle of host publicationInternational Conference on Regional Science
Place of PublicationValência
PublisherXLIV Reunión de Estudios Regionales
Number of pages17
ISBN (Electronic)978-84-09-05604-0
Publication statusPublished - 2018
EventXLIV Reunión de Estudios Regionales / V Jornades Valencianes d'Etudis Regionals: International Conference on Regional Science - ADEIT - Fundación Universidad-Empresa de la Universitat de València, Valência, Spain
Duration: 21 Nov 201823 Nov 2018


ConferenceXLIV Reunión de Estudios Regionales / V Jornades Valencianes d'Etudis Regionals


  • Innovation
  • Territory
  • R&D
  • Science Park
  • Madan Park
  • Portugal


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