Smart Regions and Cities Supporting Cluster Development and Industrial Competitiveness in the European Union. Africa’s Smart Region Development Influencing Global Competitiveness

Anna Masłoń-Oracz, Michael Mazurewicz

Smart city solutions are proving to be effective in socio-economic development worldwide. Europe’s smart city initiatives have a positive effect on cluster development, which in turn benefits Europe’s economy by integrating private, public and educational institutions. Most clusters today are focusing on growth in key strategic industries, e.g. initiatives developing the so-called Key Enabling Technologies in order to bring innovative market solutions. Nevertheless, the European Union isn’t an isolated case and many European enterprises and innovators need to adapt to a fast-changing world. In order to stay competitive, European enterprises need to acknowledge rapidly growing Asian-based organisations. In the changing world, Africa is quickly rising as the next economic frontier, where most global leaders are looking to invest due to favourable future predictions. Africa, seeing its opportunity, is opening up to new industrial solutions that could further attract many more investors to a continent historically ravaged by poor performance.

Keywords: smart city, smart region, clusters, global competitiveness, Sub-Saharan Africa