Universität Wien FIND

290066 PS "Silicon Wadi" and "Startup Nation": Economic geography of Israel (2020S)

3.00 ECTS (2.00 SWS), SPL 29 - Geographie
Continuous assessment of course work


Note: The time of your registration within the registration period has no effect on the allocation of places (no first come, first served).


max. 20 participants
Language: German



Learning materials willl be found in the Moodle course


Aims, contents and method of the course

The course introduces participants to the spatial patterns of the Israeli economy and addresses the historical evolution of the country’s economy from a developing country with socialist and agrarian characteristics towards an entrepreneurial high-technology economy. Participants will examine the structure of selected regional economies and industries (e.g. information and communication technologies or tourism) in small-group exercises, and present the result of these exercises. Participants will apply the theoretical lessons learned during in the second part of the course by writing case studies in small groups. Each case study will address a specific subject related to one region or industry in Israel. The lecturer will help students develop their research questions and the structure of their written case study. Students will write the case study during the roughly six weeks after the last course session.

Assessment and permitted materials

Students' written contributions to the case study are the primary course achievements and will be graded (50%). Presentations of the group exercises will be graded (30%), as will be students' participation in discussions and methodological exercises (20%).The lecturer will give students guidelines on how to work on the case study. For the case study and for methodological exercises, materials to be used include notably literature and insights gained from empirical methods introduced by the lecturer. To pass the course, students will be required to submit at least one contribution to each of the three assessment components.

Minimum requirements and assessment criteria

Minimum requirements for participation include an interest in questions on local and regional development and economic geography. A significant part of literature used is available in English language only. The course will be held in German language. However, depending on a sufficient number of participants willing to work in English, one case study can be written in English.
Participants are required to be present during at least two thirds of the course sessions.

Examination topics

Students' performance in participation, presentations and written case study contributions will be assessed in terms of critical reflection and application of lessons learned according to scientific standards. These lessons learned include notably theory on economic geography, empirical methods, academic writing and critical analysis of regional economic questions. The lecturer will answer students’ methodological questions between and after the course sessions.

Reading list

Avnimelech, G., Teubal, M. (2006): Creating venture capital industries that co-evolve with high tech: Insights from an extended industry life cycle perspective of the Israeli experience. Research Policy 35: 1477–98.
Breznitz, D., Ornston, D. (2013): The revolutionary power of peripheral agencies: Explaining radical policy innovation in Finland and Israel. Comparative Political Studies 46: 1219–45.
Schäfer, S., Henn, S. (2018): The evolution of entrepreneurial ecosystems and the critical role of migrants: A phase-model based on a study of IT startups in the Greater Tel Aviv Area. Cambridge Journal of Regions, Economy and Society, 11: 317–333.
Trajtenberg, M. (2001): Innovation in Israel 1968–97: A comparative analysis using patent data. Research Policy 30: 363–89.
Trajtenberg, M. (2002): Government support for commercial R and D: Lessons from the Israeli experience. Innovation Policy and the Economy 2: 79–134.
Wonglimpiyarat, J. (2016): Government policies towards Israel’s high-tech powerhouse. Technovation 52–53: 18–27.

Association in the course directory

(MG-S3-PI.f) (MG-S5-PI.f) (MG-W3-PI) (MG-W4-PI) (MR3-PI) (MR6) (MA UF GW 02)

Last modified: Th 11.03.2021 06:28