Special Research Topic
Among the influential factors on the prosperity of individuals, firms and the (local) state, regional conditions play a key role. It is the objective of regional economic research at RWI to attain fundamental knowledge about regional interdependencies in economic activity, which are of basic importance for economic policy in North Rhine-Westphalia and other regions. The location of the institute alone makes it a task for RWI to assess the economic performance of North Rhine-Westphalia and the Ruhr and to be available as a competent contact for policy makers.
Various questions about the regional consequences of changing conditions (globalisation, European integration, demographic change) or about current trends in regional agglomeration and segregation remain unanswered due to a considerable lack in empirical evidence on cause-and-effect-chains. Also, there is still insufficient evidence on the effects of regional policy. By combining specific methodical approaches of quantitative and qualitative regional analysis, microeconometrics, empirical industrial economics in particular, macro- and financial economics a cross-sectional competence is being generated, which aims at resolving this empirical deficit.
Besides regional analyses on the main topics of RWI's research, e.g. objectives, strategies and effects of regional policy are as well on the agenda as agglomeration dynamics in the European urban system. Also industrial R&D strategies and regional policy support of innovation standards and the performance of North Rhine-Westphalia in science and technology have been analysed in the last year regularily. A report on the economic situation in North Rhine-Westphalia is published every year.