Competitiveness, innovation and the national innovation system (NIS) which connects them, have been transformed and are continually changing in our postindustrial society. This essay investigates the origin and the changes of such systems as well as their main models. The modern state does not only subsidize the competitiveness of its own national economy, as its competitiveness firstly depends on the underlying innovative environment, the so-called ‘innovation milieu’ and the national innovation system, which binds the system together. At a national level it is indispensable for the development of innovation, that the economic policymakers build up a coherent system for promoting tourism. Other tools exist for the development of ecotourism in our region beyond fi nancial sponsoring and these state measures can also be realized. A study of economic co-operation systems and clusters together with innovation progress shows the Italian economic model as one of the most successful in modern Europe. The research on ecotourism clusters and a perceptional research in ‘Belsõ-Somogy’ Ecologic Network are the basis for developing an ecotourism cluster model which is applicable in the Hungarian National Parks and Nature Reserve Areas.
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