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The Layers of National Innovation Systems: The Historical Evolution of a National Innovation System in Norway

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  • Olav Wicken

    (Centre for Technology, Innovation and Culture, University of Oslo)

Abstract

The national innovation system (NIS) of Norway is characterized by diversity. This paper examines the multiple and heterogeneous historical processes, each defined as a path, that have given rise to such diversity. Each of the paths has involved specific types of social groups, organizations, knowledge bases, and institutional set-ups, and for each path a specific type of innovation structure has been developed. We define three main historical paths emerging from three major industrial transformation processes in Western history defined as Industrial Revolutions (Bruland and Mowery 2004). Each of these transformations created new industrial paths constituting a new layer in the economy. The Norwegian NIS is therefore described as the historical outcome of three diverse paths and consisting of three distinct layers. The creation of a new path does not indicate that the old paths of the economy remain static. Rather each path historically has undergone radical transformation processes in order to remain competitive in changing environments. The main dynamics of the innovation system are therefore linked to path transformation and path creation processes.

Suggested Citation

  • Olav Wicken, 2007. "The Layers of National Innovation Systems: The Historical Evolution of a National Innovation System in Norway," Working Papers on Innovation Studies 20070601, Centre for Technology, Innovation and Culture, University of Oslo.
  • Handle: RePEc:tik:inowpp:20070601
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    File URL: http://www.tik.uio.no/InnoWP/Wickenhistory%20WPready.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Lars Nerdrum & Magnus Gulbrandsen, 2007. "The technical-industrial research institutes in the Norwegian innovation system," Working Papers on Innovation Studies 20070614, Centre for Technology, Innovation and Culture, University of Oslo.
    2. Magnus Gulbrandsen & Lars Nerdrum, 2007. "University-industry relations in Norway," Working Papers on Innovation Studies 20070613, Centre for Technology, Innovation and Culture, University of Oslo.
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    Cited by:

    1. Jan Fagerberg & David C Mowery & Bart Verspagen, 2009. "The evolution of Norway's national innovation system," Science and Public Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 36(6), pages 431-444, July.
    2. Fulvio Castellacci, 2008. "Innovation in Norway in a European Perspective," Nordic Journal of Political Economy, Nordic Journal of Political Economy, vol. 34, pages 1-1.
    3. Svein Olav Nås, 2007. "Industrial structure, business demography and innovation," Working Papers on Innovation Studies 20070611, Centre for Technology, Innovation and Culture, University of Oslo.
    4. Svein Erik Moen, 2007. "Innovation and production in the Norwegian aluminium industry," Working Papers on Innovation Studies 20070604, Centre for Technology, Innovation and Culture, University of Oslo.
    5. Sverre Herstad & Øyvind Pålshaugen & Bernd Ebersberger, 2011. "Industrial Innovation Collaboration in a Capital Region Context," Journal of the Knowledge Economy, Springer;Portland International Center for Management of Engineering and Technology (PICMET), vol. 2(4), pages 507-532, December.
    6. Magnus Gulbrandsen & Lars Nerdrum, 2007. "Public sector research and industrial innovation in Norway: a historical perspective," Working Papers on Innovation Studies 20070602, Centre for Technology, Innovation and Culture, University of Oslo.

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    1. Socio-Economics of Innovation

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