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Striving Towards a Holistic Innovation Policy in European Countries - But Linearity Still Prevails!

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  • Edquist , Charles

    () (CIRCLE, Lund University)

Abstract

The concept of a holistic innovation policy is defined in this article, with discussions of what it is, why it is relevant, and how it can be implemented to enhance product innovation. It is shown that the innovation systems approach has diffused rapidly during the latest decades and has completely replaced the linear view in the field of innovation research. The majority of European countries are striving in the direction of developing a more holistic innovation policy. However, it is concluded that the innovation policies in European countries are still dominantly linear despite the fact that holistic policy seems to be the driving vision. Innovation policy is behindhand. Why innovation policy is still linear is also preliminarily discussed. Policymakers attending conferences on innovation are practically always in favor of holistic (systemic, broad-based, comprehensive, etc) innovation policies, have abandoned the linear view by learning from innovation research. The division between “linear” and “holistic” seems to be located within the community where innovation policies are designed and implemented, a community composed of policymakers (administrators/bureaucrats) and elected politicians. Perhaps the dividing line is between these two groups in that politicians, who actually make the decisions, may still reflexively believe in the linear view. Nevertheless, there seems to be a failure in communication between researchers and politicians in the field of innovation and there is therefore a strong need to involve innovation researchers in policy design and implementation to a much higher degree. Another way to increase the degree of holism could be to separate innovation policy from research policy, since their integration tends to cement the linear character of innovation policy. The empirical results are based on a questionnaire sent to twenty-three EU Member States, out of which nineteen (83%) responded. Part of the work for this article was carried out for the European Research and Innovation Area Committee (ERAC) of the European Commission (DG RTD).

Suggested Citation

  • Edquist , Charles, 2014. "Striving Towards a Holistic Innovation Policy in European Countries - But Linearity Still Prevails!," Papers in Innovation Studies 2014/22, Lund University, CIRCLE - Center for Innovation, Research and Competences in the Learning Economy.
  • Handle: RePEc:hhs:lucirc:2014_022
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Cooke, Philip & Gomez Uranga, Mikel & Etxebarria, Goio, 1997. "Regional innovation systems: Institutional and organisational dimensions," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 26(4-5), pages 475-491, December.
    2. Edquist, Charles & Zabala-Iturriagagoitia, Jon Mikel, 2012. "Public Procurement for Innovation as mission-oriented innovation policy," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 41(10), pages 1757-1769.
    3. Charles Edquist & Nicholas S. Vonortas & Jon Mikel Zabala-Iturriagagoitia, 2015. "Introduction," Chapters,in: Public Procurement for Innovation, chapter 1, pages 1-32 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    4. S. Blankenburg, 2014. "Introduction," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 38(6), pages 1295-1305.
    5. Bergek, Anna & Jacobsson, Staffan & Carlsson, Bo & Lindmark, Sven & Rickne, Annika, 2008. "Analyzing the functional dynamics of technological innovation systems: A scheme of analysis," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 37(3), pages 407-429, April.
    6. Cooke, Philip, 2001. "Regional Innovation Systems, Clusters, and the Knowledge Economy," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 10(4), pages 945-974, December.
    7. Nobes, Christopher, 2014. "Accounting: A Very Short Introduction," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199684311.
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    Cited by:

    1. Santos, Antonio Bob & Mendonca, Sandro, 2016. "A Delphi Approach to Boost an Open Innovation Policy," MPRA Paper 73007, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    2. repec:eee:respol:v:48:y:2019:i:4:p:880-894 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Edquist , Charles & Zabala-Iturriagagoitia , Jon Mikel, 2015. "The Innovation Union Scoreboard is Flawed: The case of Sweden – not being the innovation leader of the EU," Papers in Innovation Studies 2015/16, Lund University, CIRCLE - Center for Innovation, Research and Competences in the Learning Economy.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Innovation; innovation policy; holistic innovation policy; research policy; the linear view; systems of innovation;

    JEL classification:

    • L38 - Industrial Organization - - Nonprofit Organizations and Public Enterprise - - - Public Policy
    • M38 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Marketing and Advertising - - - Government Policy and Regulation
    • O25 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Development Planning and Policy - - - Industrial Policy
    • O31 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Innovation and Invention: Processes and Incentives
    • O32 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Management of Technological Innovation and R&D
    • O33 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Technological Change: Choices and Consequences; Diffusion Processes

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