Ligita Āzena, Baiba Rivža


There are two widely used “smart” concepts, often considered to be synonymous with one another - “smart city” and “smart specialisation”. The origin and initial meaning of each concept is different, although there are certain similarities. On the city level, multiple policy initiatives are oriented towards the concept of a “smart city”, which originally developed around the ICT infrastructure as a means to connect cities and thus provide opportunity for development. Recently the term “smart” has also found its way in regional policy. Therefore, it is necessary to interpret both concepts in a wider sense not limiting them only to meanings associated with technology. There is an empirical connection between smart specialisation development (in a wider sense) and introduction of smart cities (in a wider sense). But it does not mean that all regions (especially those with low manufacturing development index) should follow a strategy of research and development and/or hi-tech manufacturing.
Smart development is a multi-dimensional concept, consisting of sustainable economic growth and sustainable city or regional development, based on the advantages of sustainable competition. It is also perceived as means to increase overall quality of life. This means that social and environmental capital also plays an important role together with infrastructural and ICT development.

Keywords: Economic Developments, Smart Development, Smart Specialisation

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