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Accounting for change in national systems of innovation: A friendly critique based on the U.S. case

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  • Hart, David M.
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    Abstract

    This paper advances a friendly critique of the national systems of innovation approach and offers some suggestions for its future development. I argue that the approach has difficulty accounting for bounded change in national systems. I review three recent changes in the U.S. innovation system - the Internet boom and bust of the late 1990s and early 2000s, the response to the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, and the acceleration of productivity growth since the mid-1990s - in order to assess the strengths and weaknesses of the framework in this respect. Future research might be enriched, at least in the case of large national innovation systems, by absorbing concepts developed in other strands of institutionalist literature, such as "intercurrence" and "embeddedness".

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Research Policy.

    Volume (Year): 38 (2009)
    Issue (Month): 4 (May)
    Pages: 647-654

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:respol:v:38:y:2009:i:4:p:647-654

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    Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/respol

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    Keywords: Technological innovation United States Internet boom Counterterrorism Productivity growth;

    References

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    1. Nick Bloom & Raffaella Sadun & John Van Reenen, 2007. "Americans do I.T. better: US multinationals and the productivity miracle," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 4555, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    2. Metcalfe, J S, 1994. "Evolutionary Economics and Technology Policy," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 104(425), pages 931-44, July.
    3. Sharif, Naubahar, 2006. "Emergence and development of the National Innovation Systems concept," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 35(5), pages 745-766, June.
    4. Gordon, Robert J, 2004. "Why Was Europe Left at the Station when America's Productivity Locomotive Departed?," CEPR Discussion Papers 4416, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    5. Austan Goolsbee, 2000. "In A World Without Borders: The Impact Of Taxes On Internet Commerce," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 115(2), pages 561-576, May.
    6. Richard N. Langlois, 2002. "The Vanishing Hand: the Changing Dynamics of Industrial Capitalism," Working papers 2002-21, University of Connecticut, Department of Economics.
    7. Freeman, Chris & Louca, Francisco, 2001. "As Time Goes By: From the Industrial Revolutions to the Information Revolution," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199241071.
    8. Lundvall, Bengt-Ake & Johnson, Bjorn & Andersen, Esben Sloth & Dalum, Bent, 2002. "National systems of production, innovation and competence building," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 31(2), pages 213-231, February.
    9. Mowery, David C., 1992. "The U.S. national innovation system: Origins and prospects for change," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 21(2), pages 125-144, April.
    10. Carlsson, Bo, 2006. "Internationalization of innovation systems: A survey of the literature," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 35(1), pages 56-67, February.
    11. Susana Borr�s, 2004. "System of innovation theory and the European Union," Science and Public Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 31(6), pages 425-433, December.
    12. Jack E. Triplett, 1999. "The Solow productivity paradox: what do computers do to productivity?," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 32(2), pages 309-334, April.
    13. Chris Benner, 2003. "Learning communities in a learning region: the soft infrastructure of cross-firm learning networks in Silicon Valley," Environment and Planning A, Pion Ltd, London, vol. 35(10), pages 1809-1830, October.
    14. Oliver E. Williamson, 2000. "The New Institutional Economics: Taking Stock, Looking Ahead," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 38(3), pages 595-613, September.
    15. Erik Brynjolfsson & Lorin M. Hitt, 2000. "Beyond Computation: Information Technology, Organizational Transformation and Business Performance," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 14(4), pages 23-48, Fall.
    16. Nelson, Richard R. & Nelson, Katherine, 2002. "Technology, institutions, and innovation systems," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 31(2), pages 265-272, February.
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    Cited by:
    1. Dodgson, M. & Foster, J. & Hughes, A. & Metcalfe, J.S., 2009. "Systems Thinking, Market Failure, and the Development of Innovation Policy: The Case of Australia," ESRC Centre for Business Research - Working Papers wp397, ESRC Centre for Business Research.
    2. Soete, Luc & Verspagen, Bart & Weel, Bas ter, 2009. "Systems of Innovation," MERIT Working Papers 062, United Nations University - Maastricht Economic and Social Research Institute on Innovation and Technology (MERIT).

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