Smart specialisation and tourism: Understanding the priority choices in EU regions

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Colleges, School and Institutes

External organisations

  • University of Sassari
  • Gran Sasso Science Institute


This paper examines the regions that have chosen tourism-related strategies as a priority of smart specialisation (S3) policies within the reformed EU Cohesion Policy. The paper collects data provided by the Smart Specialisation Platform (Eye@RIS3) from 2013 to 2018 for 191 EU regions to investigate regional determinants affecting the probability to choose tourism as one of their S3 priorities. Results show that tourism is considered as priority for almost half EU regions of the sample and that these regions have not homogeneous characteristics. Tourism represents the strategic choice of already developed tourism destinations as well as regions with no tourism specialisation. No specific relationship emerges between tourism concentration and the choice of tourism as their S3 priority.


Original languageEnglish
Article number100883
JournalSocio-Economic Planning Sciences
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2020


  • Cohesion policy, Discrete choice model, European Union, Innovation, Smart specialisation, Tourism