Since the end of World War II different kinds of technopoles – innovative sites for high-tech R&D and manufacturing – have been clustering all over the world. But despite numerous attempts to replicate the mother of all technopoles, Silicon Valley, the outcomes have been highly diverse and even contradictory. On the other hand have a number of innovative communities embedded themselves within large cities, often owing little to conventional technopolitan policies. Why do some technopolitan regions thrive while others flounder, even those sharing a majority of similarities? Why have some technopolitan cities continued to harbor innovative environments although not being part of a defined technopole strategy? What other variables than the economic ones affect innovative performance?