Participating in regional economic development is one of the key strategic focuses of HEC and the University of Liege.
The Regional Economic Development Peak has four strong focus areas:
- Focus on urban policy: this is centered on the organization of the territory and of cities, the localization of economic activities, the organization of public services and transport, and urban development with regard to new technologies. The activities of the Smart City Institute are fully integrated into this first research focus.
- Focus on energy and sustainable development: this is centered on the implementation of climatic objectives in the region with a particular focus on the question of renewable sources of energy and their integration into the networks as well as the development of the latter. More broadly, this focus cultivates openness to problems of sustainable development, for which the University of Liege has acquired considerable expertise and has developed economic development projects (VERDIR, Reverse metallurgy).
- Growth is at the center of the question of economic development. Innovative, performing and competitive companies are the driving force of this development. For this, active policies of support for innovation, creativity, education, development of new technologies and development of risk capital are of prime importance. The question of industrialization / de-industrialization, which is essential in Liege and Wallonia, also receives particular attention in this third research focus.
- Social policies are at the center of the fourth focus, which is mainly concerned with problems linked to poverty, the ageing population and the constitution of human capital via training. Based on empirical work and case studies, the objective is to assess policies in effect and to bring out the good practices to be implemented both regionally and nationally.
Research centers and researchers involved :