A functionalist framework to compare research systems applied to an analysis of the transformation of the Chinese research system
This paper presents an analytical framework for the comparative analysis of National Research Systems. We follow evolutionary accounts of the research system in combination with insights from functionalist economics of innovation and organisational theorists. We also illustrate the potential use of this framework by applying it to an analysis of the Chinese research system's transformation between 1980 and 2005. During this period, this system is considered to have gradually changed from a centrally planned system to a mixed model. This implies a move in the direction of a ‘perfect market ideal type’. The increased performance of the overarching functions of the research system can be partially explained by these institutional changes.
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