The Norwegian PV manufacturing industry in a Triple Helix perspective
For the benefit of our common future, policies aimed at the development and promotion of renewable energy technologies should be based on a Triple Helix approach with a sense of technological agency. This view is supported by a case study on the emergence and development of a Norwegian solar photovoltaic manufacturing industry. The data and analyses demonstrate how this new industry was fostered by interactions between existing companies, public R&D funding programmes and research organisations and policy contexts; illustrating a policy-driven technological agency in accordance with a Triple Helix innovation process. During the last decade, a solar PV manufacturing industry has emerged in Norway and gone on to a 10 to 20 per cent share of various segments of world markets for solar PV feedstock, wafers and related components. The present financial crisis has caused an investment slump in solar PV installations, especially in Europe. Therefore, the future prospects for the Norwegian solar PV industry are at risk despite of its focus on innovation and R&D, and its technological agency. Political action is needed: (1) creation of market incentives in near markets for the deployment of solar PV, (2) international cooperation for boosting deployment of solar PV in developing countries.
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