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Maastricht Reflections on Innovation

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  • Soete, Luc

    ()
    (UNU-MERIT, and Maastricht Graduate School of Governance, Maastricht University)

Abstract

"Innovation is good for you" appears actually the common feature of most science, technology and innovation studies over the last decades. This appears, however surprising given the fact that innovation failure rather than innovation success appears a much more common feature. Hence the simple, but straightforward question which will be central in this Tans lecture: could it be that innovation is not always good for you? A frequently heard argument is that at a societal level, innovation is renewing society's dynamics and hence leading to higher levels of economic development and welfare. A process of creative destruction destroying maybe a few incumbents to the benefit though of many newcomers. However, sometimes the exact opposite pattern: a process of destructive innovation, benefiting a few at the expense of many, will occur. In this period of "crises" examples abound of such destructive creation processes. In this Tanslecture some typical examples will be highlighted: our unsustainable fossil-fuel based economic growth at the global level; European monetary integration at the European level; financial innovation at the sectoral level.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by United Nations University - Maastricht Economic and Social Research Institute on Innovation and Technology (MERIT) in its series MERIT Working Papers with number 001.

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Date of creation: 2012
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Handle: RePEc:unm:unumer:2012001

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Related research

Keywords: Innovation; Creative Destruction; Destructive Creation; Economic Growth; International Relations; Financial Crisis;

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  1. Ramani, Shyama V., 2008. "Playing in Invisible Markets: Innovations in the Market for Toilets to Harness the Economic Power of the Poor," MERIT Working Papers 012, United Nations University - Maastricht Economic and Social Research Institute on Innovation and Technology (MERIT).
  2. Calvano, Emilio, 2006. "Destructive Creation," Working Paper Series in Economics and Finance 653, Stockholm School of Economics, revised 18 Jul 2007.
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