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The Swedish National Innovation Council: Innovation policy governance to replace linearity with holism

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Abstract

The Swedish National Innovation Council (NIC) was created by the Prime Minister (Stefan Löfven) in February 2015, and it has now been operating for 18 months. It is personally chaired by the Prime Minister, which is unusual for such councils in other countries. Another atypical characteristic of the Swedish NIC is its dominant and wide focus on innovation rather than on research (for which there is another council in Sweden). The existence of NIC has given innovation policy issues a much higher status and degree of importance both within the government itself and within government agencies, i.e. in the entire state apparatus. NIC has become a major governance instrument in order to transform Swedish innovation policy from being linear towards becoming holistic. The continued separation between innovation policy and research policy is also very important if the linear view shall lose its dominance in the field of innovation policy. The Swedish NIC will be described and analyzed in this paper and its operation will be exemplified by four types of NIC activity. I will show that two of these activities have already been directly successful in influencing innovation policy in practice (state risk capital provision and innovation-related public procurement) and that an interesting development has been taking place in the other two (holistic innovation policy and additionality). These examples will be placed within a framework of the relevant innovation theory and of the development of innovation policy in a larger context.

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  • Edquist, Charles, 2016. "The Swedish National Innovation Council: Innovation policy governance to replace linearity with holism," Papers in Innovation Studies 2016/24, Lund University, CIRCLE - Center for Innovation, Research and Competences in the Learning Economy.
  • Handle: RePEc:hhs:lucirc:2016_024
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    1. Asheim, Bjorn T & Isaksen, Arne, 2002. "Regional Innovation Systems: The Integration of Local 'Sticky' and Global 'Ubiquitous' Knowledge," The Journal of Technology Transfer, Springer, vol. 27(1), pages 77-86, January.
    2. 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.
    3. Borrás, Susana & Edquist, Charles, 2013. "The choice of innovation policy instruments," Technological Forecasting and Social Change, Elsevier, vol. 80(8), pages 1513-1522.
    4. 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.
    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. Charles Edquist, 2011. "Design of innovation policy through diagnostic analysis: identification of systemic problems (or failures)," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 20(6), pages 1725-1753, December.
    8. ., 2014. "Introduction to Part III," Chapters,in: Common Innovation, chapter 15, pages 133-134 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    9. Borrás , Susana & Edquist , Charles, 2014. "Innovation Policy for Knowledge Production and R&D: the Investment Portfolio Approach," Papers in Innovation Studies 2014/21, Lund University, CIRCLE - Center for Innovation, Research and Competences in the Learning Economy.
    10. ., 2014. "Introduction: status, superstars and markets," Chapters,in: The Political Economy of Status, chapter 1, pages 1-13 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    11. Borrás, Susana & Edquist, Charles, 2013. "The Choice of Innovation Policy Instruments," Papers in Innovation Studies 2013/4, Lund University, CIRCLE - Center for Innovation, Research and Competences in the Learning Economy.
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    Cited by:

    1. Edquist, Charles, 2018. "Towards a Holistic Innovation Policy: Can the Swedish National Innovation Council Serve as a Role Model?," Papers in Innovation Studies 2018/2, Lund University, CIRCLE - Center for Innovation, Research and Competences in the Learning Economy.
    2. repec:eee:respol:v:48:y:2019:i:1:p:169-179 is not listed on IDEAS

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Innovation; Innovation Policy; Holistic innovation policy; Research policy; Linear view; Systems of innovation;

    JEL classification:

    • O30 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - General
    • O38 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Government Policy
    • O49 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - Other
    • O52 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies - - - Europe

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