Purpose: The role of clusters in the development and growth of local and national economies has been extensively studied and discussed in global literature. Different methodologies are used for analysing the impact these have in national and regional economies, such as the input–output (IO) and gravity models. This paper aims to detail the methodologies present in the literature and propose a new robust theoretical framework, which facilitates the evaluation and comparison among maritime clusters in terms of attractiveness assisting stakeholders to devise strategies, which will attract companies. Design/methodology/approach: An index is created composed of five key categories, namely, infrastructure, financing, governance, manpower and institution/legislation. For the analysis of the index, multi-attribute utility theory (MAUT) is used as a tool to evaluate the importance and performance of the different attributes using both quantitative and qualitative criteria. The methodology has been tested via the use the Piraeus maritime cluster. Findings: The framework has been tested on its robustness and friendliness to the user providing useful insights to the stakeholders. Among the results has been the importance of the finance, manpower and infrastructure attributes, which appear to promote the cluster’s attractiveness. In addition, legislation and institutional partnerships, along with Government support, need to take place improve the performance of the cluster. Research limitations/implications: A key limitation is the fact that the methodology has been tested in a single case. Applying the methodological framework in a wider sample of clusters will significantly improve the present work. Originality/value: The proposed model takes further existing research in the field via adopting the philosophy of the World Bank’s Logistics Performance Index. Among the benefits of the proposed index is that it offers the flexibility and robustness to compare among different maritime clusters globally and can be readily used as a benchmarking policy tool at national, regional and global levels at any given point in time and attribute dimension.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Business and International Management
- Strategy and Management
- Management of Technology and Innovation