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Skills required for innovation: A review of the literature

  • Petr Hanel

    ()

    (CIRST, GREDI, Faculte d'administration, Université de Sherbrooke)

This review of the innovation literature seeks to identify the role of skilled labor in the process of innovation and technological change. After an introduction of main innovation theories, the role of skills is analyzed from several perspectives: (1) Independent innovator – entrepreneur; skills deployed and needed; the role of education (2)Firm –the contribution of skilled labor to innovation from within the firm and from external sources. (3) Regional systems of innovation - Endowment of regions and cities in human resources, regional/local labour markets and knowledge spillovers (4) National systems of Innovation- national institutions and policies regarding human resources, labour markets, education system and various aspects of economic and technological infrastructure. (5) Technological milieu. - skilled labor involved in innovation evolves in various environments such as scientific, technical and trade associations, formal and informal contacts. (6) Scientific base.- The role of industry-university and public-private research collaboration in innovation. (7) Is innovation skill-biased?. The second part of the study looks at findings of recent studies of innovation and technology adoption in Canadian manufacturing and services with regard to skilled labor. Also addressed is the impact of innovation on skills. The shortage of skilled labor is widely recognised as an obstacle to innovation and adoption new technologies, especially by firms that introduce the most original innovations and the most advanced technologies. Overall, the innovation literature offers little in terms of concrete general information on particular skills needed for successful innovation. The paper concludes with a critical assessment of shortcomings of innovation and related surveys with regard to information on skilled labor and its role in innovation and technology adoption.

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File URL: http://gredi.recherche.usherbrooke.ca/wpapers/GREDI-0723.pdf
File Function: First version, 2007
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Paper provided by Departement d'Economique de la Faculte d'administration à l'Universite de Sherbrooke in its series Cahiers de recherche with number 07-23.

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Length: 51 pages
Date of creation: 2007
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:shr:wpaper:07-23
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  2. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521037136 is not listed on IDEAS
  3. Petr Hanel, 2004. "Innovation in the Canadian Service Sector," Cahiers de recherche 04-03, Departement d'Economique de la Faculte d'administration à l'Universite de Sherbrooke.
  4. Hans Loof & Almas Heshmati, 2006. "On the relationship between innovation and performance: A sensitivity analysis," Economics of Innovation and New Technology, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 15(4-5), pages 317-344.
  5. Rachel Griffith & Elena Huergo & Jacques Mairesse & Bettina Peters, 2006. "Innovation and Productivity across Four European Countries," NBER Working Papers 12722, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  16. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521810869 is not listed on IDEAS
  17. Baldwin, John R. & Johnson, Joanne, 1996. "Business strategies in more- and less-innovative firms in Canada," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 25(5), pages 785-804, August.
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