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In defence of the linear model: An essay

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  • Balconi, Margherita
  • Brusoni, Stefano
  • Orsenigo, Luigi

Abstract

This essay discusses the strength and weaknesses of the so-called linear model (LM) of innovation. It is a reaction to the habit of criticising it as over simplistic, mechanistic, or simply blatantly wrong. We argue that, while some criticisms are of course well grounded, many others are instead based on loose interpretations and unwarranted assumptions. In order to separate the wheat from the chaff, this essay first presents a comprehensive description of the linear model and differentiates it from the caricature many refer to. Second, we discuss the main criticisms put forward and argue that many of them are not at all destructive, but can be easily accepted within a refined version of the LM. Third, we discuss the policy implications often derived (or said to derive) from the LM to argue that the LM itself is distinctively policy-neutral. Other assumptions have to be added to justify alternative policy implications.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Research Policy.

Volume (Year): 39 (2010)
Issue (Month): 1 (February)
Pages: 1-13

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Handle: RePEc:eee:respol:v:39:y:2010:i:1:p:1-13

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

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Keywords: Linear model Innovation Research Chain-linked model;

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References

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Cited by:
  1. Luca Berchicci & Jeroen P.J. de Jong & Mark Freel, 2013. "Remote Collaboration, Absorptive Capacity, and the Innovative Output of High-tech Small Firms," DRUID Working Papers 13-01, DRUID, Copenhagen Business School, Department of Industrial Economics and Strategy/Aalborg University, Department of Business Studies.
  2. Cocchi, Andrea, 2011. "Business models as systemic instruments for the evolution of traditional districts?," MPRA Paper 33766, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  3. Marco Bettiol & Vladi Finotto & Eleonora Di Maria & Stefano Micelli, 2014. "The hidden side of innovation: why tinkerers matter," Working Papers 8, Department of Management, Università Ca' Foscari Venezia.
  4. Barge-Gil, Andrés & López, Alberto, 2011. "R versus D: Estimating the differentiated effect of research and development on innovation results," MPRA Paper 29091, University Library of Munich, Germany.

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