Handball’s Talent Hot Spot

from mbl.is

There is an interesting article in today’s Morgunblaðið (Icelandic Newspaper) about a former national team handball player who completed his master’s degree. Konráð Olavsson explored in his thesis why Iceland produces such an abnormal number of top handball players and coaches. He claims Iceland is a perfect example of a talent „hot spot“ where there is a high concentration of good youth teams, with good coaches and good facilities. Most of Iceland’s top handball programs are within forty minutes drive from each other and can offer each other challenging competition on a regular basis.

This is an example of clusters as explored in cluster theories, for example at Harvard Business School.

Clusters are geographic concentrations of interconnected companies, specialized suppliers, service providers, and associated institutions in a particular field that are present in a nation or region. Clusters arise because they increase the productivity with which companies can compete. The development and upgrading of clusters is an important agenda for governments, companies, and other institutions. Cluster development initiatives are an important new direction in economic policy, building on earlier efforts in macroeconomic stabilization, privatization, market opening, and reducing the costs of doing business.

From Harvard Business School