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Technological innovation and complexity theory

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Author Info

  • Koen Frenken

Abstract

Complexity theory has become influential in recent models in social science. In the context of innovations and new technologies, most applications have focused on technology adoption and technology diffusion, whereas the topic of the innovation process has received less attention. This paper discusses three families of complexity models of technological innovation: fitness landscape models, network models and percolation models. The models are capable of analysing complex interaction structures (between components of technologies, between agents engaged in collective invention) while avoiding 'over-parameterisation'. The paper ends with discussing the methodological challenges and critiques regarding the application of complexity theory that remain.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Taylor & Francis Journals in its journal Economics of Innovation and New Technology.

Volume (Year): 15 (2006)
Issue (Month): 2 ()
Pages: 137-155

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Handle: RePEc:taf:ecinnt:v:15:y:2006:i:2:p:137-155

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Related research

Keywords: Innovation; Complexity; Fitness landscape; NK-model; Percolation; Complex networks;

References

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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Cristiano Antonelli & Giuseppe Scellato, 2013. "Complexity and technological change: knowledge interactions and firm level total factor productivity," Journal of Evolutionary Economics, Springer, vol. 23(1), pages 77-96, January.
  2. Safarzyńska, Karolina & Brouwer, Roy & Hofkes, Marjan, 2013. "Evolutionary modelling of the macro-economic impacts of catastrophic flood events," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 88(C), pages 108-118.
  3. Floris J. Huétink & Alexander van der Vooren & Floortje Alkemade, 2009. "Initial infrastructure development strategies for the transition to sustainable mobility," Innovation Studies Utrecht (ISU) working paper series 09-05, Utrecht University, Department of Innovation Studies, revised Mar 2009.
  4. Cristiano, Antonelli, 2010. "The economic complexity of technology and innovation. A review article of The nature of technology. What it is and how it evolves, by Arthur, W.B. Free Press, New York, pp.1-247"," Department of Economics and Statistics Cognetti de Martiis LEI & BRICK - Laboratory of Economics of Innovation "Franco Momigliano", Bureau of Research in Innovation, Complexity and Knowledge, Collegio 201003, University of Turin.
  5. Albert Faber & Koen Frenken, 2008. "Models in evolutionary economics and environmental policy: Towards an evolutionary environmental economics," Innovation Studies Utrecht (ISU) working paper series 08-15, Utrecht University, Department of Innovation Studies, revised Apr 2008.
  6. Horst Hanusch & Andreas Pyka, 2007. "Principles of Neo-Schumpeterian Economics," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 31(2), pages 275-289, March.
  7. Blom, Martin & Castellacci, Fulvio & Fevolden, Arne, 2012. "Defence firms facing liberalization: innovation and export in an agent-based model of the defence industry," MPRA Paper 35702, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  8. Patrucco, Pier Paolo, 2008. "Complexity and Organizational Change in the Coordination of Technological Knowledge: Evidence from the Automobile Cluster in Turin," Department of Economics and Statistics Cognetti de Martiis LEI & BRICK - Laboratory of Economics of Innovation "Franco Momigliano", Bureau of Research in Innovation, Complexity and Knowledge, Collegio 200808, University of Turin.
  9. Elvira Uyarra, 2011. "Regional innovation systems revisited: networks, institutions, policy and complexity," Openloc Working Papers 1113, Public policies and local development.
  10. Faggini, Marisa & Parziale, Anna, 2011. "Fitness landscape and tax planning: NK model for fiscal federalism," MPRA Paper 33770, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  11. Sylvie Geisendorf, 2010. "Searching NK Fitness Landscapes: On the Trade Off Between Speed and Quality in Complex Problem Solving," Computational Economics, Society for Computational Economics, vol. 35(4), pages 395-406, April.

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