Smart Economic Planning and Industrial Policy Conference is organized by Center for Leadership and Entrepreneurship, Istanbul Commerce University and Center for Islamic Economics and Economic Systems, Istanbul Commerce University.

National economic planning aims at defining strategic economic objectives and priorities for a country and designing longer term policies and institutional frameworks to achieve them. Complemented in some cases by industrial policies, economic planning is a dynamic attempt to change the structure defining parameters and policy mix of an economy.

In market based economies ranging from Western Europe to Asia, planning has been practiced since the end of the Second World War as a key developmental tool. Industrial policies have a longer history that could be traced back to at least Alexander Hamilton. Again, they have been employed in different countries under different forms.

Economic development has still been an ongoing quest and successful economic development is probably needed more than before by many nations, Since 1980s, however, with significant changes in the dynamics of the world economy, economic planning and industrial policy have been less and less discussed in academic and policy circles.

As external and domestic conditions have changed so should planning. However, although it continued to be practiced one way or another in many countries, lack of discussion leads to either ‘planning as before’ (being called economic planning or under the disguise of various other tools) or no formal planning. The former is likely to be inadequate or even inappropriate under new surrounding conditions. On the other hand, economic planning under different forms consist of related but generally uncoordinated developmental tools such as public sector strategic plans, revived forms of physical infrastructure planning, new versions of industrial, technology, innovation, cluster and/or R&D  policies. They are also likely to suffer from ineffective and/or cost-inefficient outcomes as they are generally ad hoc policy responses. On the other hand, it could also be argued that countries which opted or opt for no formal economic planning in fact practice certain aspects of planning this way or that way.

Owing to waning interest in economic planning and industrial policy, important questions such as the following, are not receiving the proper attention: In what ways and areas, are economic planning and industrial policy being conceptualized and implemented in today’s world? Are there still reasonable roles for economic planning in today’s world in assisting nations’ quest towards economic development? What are other tools forming an ecosystem of planning and industrial policy that can help accelerate economic development?

The conference addresses such questions and considers new roles for economic planning, industrial policy and related contemporary tools to support economic development and national competitiveness. Firstly, it broadly discusses national economic planning in terms of the earlier theoretical and practical motivations. Secondly, it looks at selected country experiences with economic planning in restrospect and prospect. Thirdly, similarly, it looks at industrial policy in selected countries / regions. Finally, it discusses new economic planning approaches and complementing developmental tools such as learning systems, technology policy, cluster policy and links to regional development.

Professor Murat Yülek’ s new book , “Economic Planning and Industrial Policy in the Globalizing Economy”, will be released in July, 2014. For the flyer of the book:  http://www.springer.com/economics/development/book/978-3-319-06473-4