Leaders and Laggards – An Analysis of Regional Growth Patterns in East Germany 1996 – 2005
Since the half of the 1990s, a heterogeneous development of East Germany NUTS 3 regions has taken place. Some of these regions could increase their competitiveness and regional employment. Otherwise, some regions do exist with less positive economic developments. This article tries to contribute to this discussion. With the help of productivity and employment growth rates from 1996 to 2005, we create a regional classifications scheme for East Germany. Four types can be identified: Growth Regions, Weak Growth Regions, Regions in Transition, Stagnant Regions. Further, we demonstrate that each of these regions is undergoing specific patterns of structural change. Growth Regions (above average productivity growth and employment growth) benefit from positive developments both in the manufacturing and service sector. Additional research indicates that there is a need for an industrial base which contributes to a sound service sector. Thereby, spatial proximity of these sectors seems to be elementary for the above average development of this type of regions.