IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Eco-Innovation and Transitions


  • René Kemp


Eco-Innovation and Transitions - This paper is aimed at examining the scholarship on system innovation and societal transformation for sustainable development, which today is known as "transition management". In theoretical terms, the approach of transition management relies on markets, guidance in the form of goals and visions of sustainable development, network management with an element of self-organisation. Transition management could be viewed as "evolutionary governance" as it is concerned with the functioning of the variation-selection-retention process: creating variety informed by visions of the sustainability, shaping new paths and reflexively adapting existing institutional frameworks and regimes. It is a model for escaping lock-in and moving towards solutions offering multiple benefits, not just for users but also for society as a whole. It is not a megalomaniac attempt to control the future but an attempt to insert normative goals into evolutionary processes in a reflexive manner. The multilevel perspective of change and the model of goal-oriented modulation and reflexive governance, on which transition management is based, are described. Experiences with transition management in the Netherlands are described too, as well as the international debate on transition management as a model of governance for sustainable development. Keywords: eco-innovation, transition, reflexive governance, multi-level change, the Netherlands JEL classification: B52; Q50 Parole chiave: governance ambientale; fallimenti del mercato; esternalità; beni pubblici; economia del benessere; economia istituzionale.

Suggested Citation

  • René Kemp, 2009. "Eco-Innovation and Transitions," ECONOMICS AND POLICY OF ENERGY AND THE ENVIRONMENT, FrancoAngeli Editore, vol. 0(1), pages 103-124.
  • Handle: RePEc:fan:efeefe:v:html10.3280/efe2009-001007

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: Single articles can be downloaded buying download credits, for info:

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. René Kemp, 2010. "The Dutch energy transition approach," International Economics and Economic Policy, Springer, vol. 7(2), pages 291-316, August.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • B52 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - Current Heterodox Approaches - - - Historical; Institutional; Evolutionary
    • Q50 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - General


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:fan:efeefe:v:html10.3280/efe2009-001007. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Angelo Ventriglia). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.