Dr Adam Drobniak, Department of Strategic and Regional Sciences, University of Economics in Katowice
Dr Jan Suchacek, VŠB-Technical University of Ostrava
Prof. Dr. Christian Schulz
Prof. Rudiger Wink, HTWK Leipzig


The RSA Research Network on Transition and Resilience for Post-industrial Agglomerations in Central Europe is searching for the specific driving forces and capabilities explaining the economic resilience of post-industrial agglomeration regions in Central Europe under the particular circumstances of their transition during the last two decades. A special focus will be laid on those post-industrial agglomerations with heavy industrial background, as there various sources of path-dependencies (industrial, institutional, mental, political, technological, qualification based) are generally seen as special challenges. In contrast to existing research networks dealing with post industrial regions (e.g. “The role of industrial knowledge” in these regions), this proposed network concentrates on evolutionary processes, factors influencing the resilience in times of crises and the specific challenges of Central European regions in contrast to Western European post-industrial agglomerations. Close cooperation with the existing network will be achieved, as there are already mutual research contacts.

This extension of the research on post-industrial regions is particularly timely, as the global economic crisis shed light to the close linkages between cyclical and structural shocks strengthening the impression of unstable knowledge economies being exposed to technological changes, contemporary environmental challenges and the volatility of financial markets and business cycles. Hence, the research network shall include theoretical discussions on the identification of resilience criteria and factors as well as policy debates and case studies on strategic consequences for regional policies and urban planning.

The specific objectives of a research network relate to:

  • diagnosis and evaluation of preconditions for regional resilience in postindustrial agglomerations considering existing case studies and research,
  • examining evolutionary development mechanisms of the post-industrial agglomerations in Central Europe reflecting the specific role of single organisations, programs and instruments,
  • developing economic urban policy recommendations by identifying preconditions for successful evolutionary policy settings under the specific circumstances of the regions in focus.