Professor Lisa De Propris

Professor Lisa De Propris

Business School
Professor of Regional Economic Development

Contact details

Birmingham Business School
University of Birmingham
University House
B15 2TT

Lisa's research interests include knowledge economy, innovation, and technological change; innovation systems, clusters, and industrial districts; regional development and competitiveness. In parallel, I have always been concerned with the role of the government and institutions including innovation and industrial policies and EU regional and cohesion policy.


  • 1994-99  PhD Economics, University of Birmingham Title: “Flexibility and Innovation in District-type Clusters”


Lisa has published consistently and extensively in top-ranked journals including Journal of Economic Geography, Cambridge Journal of Economics, Urban Studies, Regional Studies, European Planning Studies, International Journal of the Economics of Business, Journal of Public Policy, Journal of Common Market Studies, and Policy Studies. Her reputation in the field of industrial and regional economics has enabled me to develop an international network of contacts and joint research which has led to published outputs such as edited volumes and journal special issues. Most recently, through her research on creative industries she has been a keynote speaker at high profile events organised by the Committee of the Regions and European Commission. She is currently involved in two FP7 Project called ‘Welfare, Wealth and Work for Europe ’ and ‘SmartCulture’, an INTERREG Project called ‘ NICER-DISTRICT+’ and an AHRC funded project called ‘Cultural intermediation: connecting communities in the creative urban economy’.


  • Economics for Business (UG year 1)
  • Business Economy and Government (UG year 2)
  • Globalisation Innovation and Competitiveness (UG, year 3)

Postgraduate supervision

  • Industrial districts
  • Networks and clusters
  • Economic development and global value chains
  • Innovation and industrial policy
  • EU regional policies

Lisa is currently interested in supervising PhD projects on technological change; digitalisation and green transitions; regional economies; economic development and global value chains, innovation and industrial policy; EU regional policies.


Selected grants

January 2016-December 2018

Horizon 2020 Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions- RISE

MAKERS - Smart Manufacturing for EU Growth and Prosperity, 15 Partners in Europe, US and Singapore. Euro 1,000,000.

September 2015-September  2017

Horizon 2020 Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions- Individual Fellowships.

Skillup. Skill development and firm upgrading to sustain the competitiveness of the EU manufacturing sector”. Euro 183,455

Jan 2015- Dec 2016

EPSRC-ESRC Building sustainable local nexuses of food, energy and water: from smart engineering to shared prosperity (The Local Nexus Network).  £62,000 to UoB as a Network Partner out of £500,000 overall.

April 2012 – June 2016 FP7 Large-Scale Integrating Project

Towards a New Growth Path: Welfare, Wealth and Work for Europe

The objective of the project is to provide the analytical basis for the need, the feasibility and the scope of a socio-ecological transition, to derive policy instruments for shifting Europe to a new "high road path", and the institutional changes needed at all policy levels. The work package I am responsible for focuses on industrial policy. The project involves 18 partners across the EU27 in Austria, Hungary, France, Germany, Italy, Slovakia, Hungary, Belgium, Czech Republic, Sweden, and Spain. Co-investigator (Lead at Birmingham). Sum awarded €164,000.

April 2012 – June 2016 AHRC - Communities, Cultures and Creative Economies

Cultural intermediation: connecting communities in the creative urban economy

The project looks at the value of cultural intermediation and how this activity can be enhanced to create more effective connections between communities and the creative economy. The objectives of the research are: to create new ways of measuring value; to analyse the historic development of cultural intermediation to inform current practice; to examine how intermediation fits within the existing policy landscape and the governance of relations between the different actors; and to explore the effectiveness of intermediation activity from a community perspective. The project involves five partners across the UK. Co-investigator. Sum awarded: £25,000.

Other activities

  • Tutor to BSc International Business with Italian
  • Member of the Marketing Advisory Group in The Birmingham Business School


Baldoni, E.; De Propris, L.; Storai, D. (2022 forthcoming) Territorial servitisation in Italian Industrial Districts: the role of Technological and Professional KIBS, The Competitiveness Review. 

Bellandi, M.; De Propris, L. (2021) Local Productive Systems’ Transitions to Industry 4.0+. Sustainability, 13, 13052.  

De Propris L and Bellandi M. (2021) Regions beyond Industry 4.0, Regional Studies, Volume 55, Issue 10-11,   

De Propris L. and Bailey D. (2021) Pathways of regional transformation and Industry 4.0, Regional Studies, Volume 55, Issue 10-11,   

Yin, T., De Propris, L., & Jabbour, L. (2021). Assessing the effects of policies on China’s outward foreign direct investment. International Business Review.  

Pegoraro, D., De Propris, L., & Chidlow, A. (2021). Regional factors enabling manufacturing reshoring strategies: A case study perspective. Journal of International Business Policy, 1-22.  

Barzotto M. and De Propris L. (2021) The value of firm linkages in the age of industry 4.0: a qualitative comparative analysis, The Annals of Regional Science, open access,  

Bailey, D., Clark, J., Colombelli, A., Corradini, C., De Propris, L., Derudder, B., Fratesi, U., Fritsch, M., Harrison, J., Hatfield, M. and Kemeny, T., (2020) Regions in a time of pandemic. Regional Studies, VOL. 54, NO. 9, 1163-1174  

Marco Bellandi, Lisa De Propris & Claudia Vecciolini (2020) Effects of learning, unlearning and forgetting on path development: the case of the Macerata-Fermo footwear industrial districts, European Planning Studies, Vol. 29, No.2

John Harrison, Mercedes Delgado, Ben Derudder, Isabelle Anguelovski, Sergio Montero, David Bailey & Lisa De Propris (2019) Pushing regional studies beyond its borders, Regional Studies, VOL. 54, NO. 1, 129-139

Bellandi, M., De Propris L. & Santini, E. (2019) An evolutionary analysis of industrial districts: the changing multiplicity of production know-how nuclei, Cambridge Journal of Economics. 43, 1, p. 1-18, .  

Anton Johannes Veldhuis, Jane Glover, David Bradley, Kourosh Behzadian, Alma López-Avilés, Julian Cottee, Clare Downing, John Ingram, Matthew Leach, Raziyeh Farmani, David Butler, Andy Pike, Lisa De Propris, Laura Purvis, Pamela Robinson, Aidong Yang (2019), Re-distributed manufacturing and the food-water-energy nexus: opportunities and challenges, Production Planning and Control, Volume 30 Issue 7 Open Access.

De Propris L. and Storai D. (2018) Servitizing industrial regions, Regional Studies 

Barzotto M and De Propris L. (2019) Skill up: smart work, occupational mix and regional productivity, Journal of Economic Geography, vol. 19, issue 5, 1049-1075

Bailey D., Corradini C., De Propris L. (2018)  ‘Home-sourcing’ and closer value chains in mature economies: the case of Spanish manufacturing, Cambridge Journal of Economics, Volume 42, Issue 6, 9 (1567–1584),

Bailey B. and De Propris L (2017) Brexit and the UK Automotive Industry, NIESR November.

Bellandi M. and De Propris L (2017) New forms of industrial districts. Journal of Industrial and Business Economics.

Corradini, C., and De Propris, L. (2017). Beyond local search: Bridging platforms and inter-sectoral technological integration. Research Policy, 46(1), 196-206.

Bellandi M. and De Propris L. (2015) Three Generations of Industrial Districts, Journal of Regional Research, No 32, pp89-114.

Corradini, C., and De Propris, L. (2015). Technological diversification and new innovators in European regions: evidence from patent data. Environment and Planning A, 47(10), 2170-2186.

Bailey, D. and De Propris L. (2014) Recession, Recovery and Resilience? Regional Studies. 48(11), 1757-1760.

View all publications in research portal