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Innovation studies--The emerging structure of a new scientific field


  • Fagerberg, Jan
  • Verspagen, Bart


The scholarly literature on innovation was for a long time not very voluminous. But as shown in the paper, this is now rapidly changing. New journals, professional associations and organizational units within universities focusing on innovation have also been formed. This paper explores the cognitive and organizational characteristics of this emerging field of social science and considers its prospects and challenges. The research reported in this paper is based on a web-survey in which more than one thousand scholars worldwide took part.

Suggested Citation

  • Fagerberg, Jan & Verspagen, Bart, 2009. "Innovation studies--The emerging structure of a new scientific field," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 38(2), pages 218-233, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:respol:v:38:y:2009:i:2:p:218-233

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Jacob Schmookler, 1962. "Changes in Industry and in the State of Knowledge as Determinants of Industrial Invention," NBER Chapters,in: The Rate and Direction of Inventive Activity: Economic and Social Factors, pages 195-232 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Richard Nelson, 1962. "The Link Between Science and Invention: The Case of the Transistor," NBER Chapters,in: The Rate and Direction of Inventive Activity: Economic and Social Factors, pages 549-584 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. David J. TEECE, 2008. "Profiting from technological innovation: Implications for integration, collaboration, licensing and public policy," World Scientific Book Chapters,in: The Transfer And Licensing Of Know-How And Intellectual Property Understanding the Multinational Enterprise in the Modern World, chapter 5, pages 67-87 World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
    4. Verspagen, Bart & Werker, Claudia, 2004. "Keith Pavitt and the Invisible College of the Economics of Technology and Innovation," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 33(9), pages 1419-1431, November.
    5. repec:fth:harver:1473 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Kenneth Arrow, 1962. "Economic Welfare and the Allocation of Resources for Invention," NBER Chapters,in: The Rate and Direction of Inventive Activity: Economic and Social Factors, pages 609-626 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. Verspagen, Bart & Werker, Claudia, 2003. "The Invisible College of The Economics of Innovation and Technological Change," Estudios de Economía Aplicada, Estudios de Economía Aplicada, vol. 21, pages 393-419, December.
    8. Pavitt, Keith, 1984. "Sectoral patterns of technical change: Towards a taxonomy and a theory," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 13(6), pages 343-373, December.
    9. Zvi Griliches, 1998. "Patent Statistics as Economic Indicators: A Survey," NBER Chapters,in: R&D and Productivity: The Econometric Evidence, pages 287-343 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    10. Jan Fagerberg, 2003. "Schumpeter and the revival of evolutionary economics: an appraisal of the literature," Journal of Evolutionary Economics, Springer, vol. 13(2), pages 125-159, April.
    11. Diamond, Arthur Jr., 2003. "Edwin Mansfield's contributions to the economics of technology," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 32(9), pages 1607-1617, October.
    12. Martin, Ben R., 2012. "The evolution of science policy and innovation studies," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 41(7), pages 1219-1239.
    13. Nelson, Richard R. & Winter, Sidney G., 1993. "In search of useful theory of innovation," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 22(2), pages 108-108, April.
    14. Richard R. Nelson, 1959. "The Simple Economics of Basic Scientific Research," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 67, pages 297-297.
    15. Rosenberg, Nathan, 1974. "Karl Marx on the Economic Role of Science," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 82(4), pages 713-728, July/Aug..
    16. Zvi Griliches, 1998. "Issues in Assessing the Contribution of Research and Development to Productivity Growth," NBER Chapters,in: R&D and Productivity: The Econometric Evidence, pages 17-45 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    17. Arthur Diamond, 2004. "Zvi Griliches's contributions to the economics of technology and growth," Economics of Innovation and New Technology, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 13(4), pages 365-397.
    18. Dosi, Giovanni, 1988. "Sources, Procedures, and Microeconomic Effects of Innovation," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 26(3), pages 1120-1171, September.
    19. Cohen, Wesley M & Levinthal, Daniel A, 1989. "Innovation and Learning: The Two Faces of R&D," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 99(397), pages 569-596, September.
    20. M. V. Posner, 1961. "International Trade And Technical Change," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 13(3), pages 323-341.
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    More about this item


    Innovation Network Invisible college Inter-disciplinarity Cognitive community;

    JEL classification:

    • D02 - Microeconomics - - General - - - Institutions: Design, Formation, Operations, and Impact
    • D23 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Organizational Behavior; Transaction Costs; Property Rights
    • D73 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Bureaucracy; Administrative Processes in Public Organizations; Corruption
    • D8 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty
    • H1 - Public Economics - - Structure and Scope of Government


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