Behavioural additionality in strategic basic research
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Behavioural Additionality in Strategic Basic Research. ‘New Frontiers in Evaluation’ Vienna, 24 April 2006 Jan Larosse, EC-DG RTD Paul Schreurs, IWT Flanders. Outline. Why new evaluation concepts? What is BA? Context IWT SBO programme ‘Internalising’ BA in the programme design

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Behavioural Additionality in Strategic Basic Research

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Behavioural Additionality in Strategic Basic Research

‘New Frontiers in Evaluation’

Vienna, 24 April 2006

Jan Larosse, EC-DG RTD

Paul Schreurs, IWT Flanders


  • Why new evaluation concepts?

  • What is BA?

  • Context IWT

  • SBO programme

  • ‘Internalising’ BA in the programme design

  • Conclusions

1. Why new evaluation concepts?

  • Shift in Policy Rationale

    • Lisbon Strategy: R&D for ‘growth and jobs’

    • Linking science and industry: new incentives for academic researchers

    • System approach: ‘extended’ additionality

  • Shift in Policy evaluation

    • From context of policy legitimation to context of policy learning

    • Evaluation as part of policy cycle (design)

2. What is BA?

  • Additionality

    • ‘Making the difference’

    • Traditional reference to ‘market failure’

    • Externalities are everywhere

  • Behaviour

    • Input additionality = investment behaviour

    • Opening the ‘black box’ of the innovation process

    • Behavioural Additionality is everywhere

3. Context IWT

  • Innovation Agency in ‘bottom-up’ governance model

  • One-stop shop for business R&D; coordinator intermediating services

  • Gradual expansion of portfolio

  • Interest in ‘additionality’

    • Conferences 6CP 1997, 2003

    • Evaluations (large scale survey on BA in 2006 running)

Additionality ‘in figures’

4. SBO-programme

SBO = "competence centre"-type of programme

financial support of 2,5 to 3 million euros to allow the funding of a team of 5 to 7 researchers for a period of four years (open to all disciplines, all actors).

"high risk-high potential" strategic basic research integrated in a strategic knowledge platform

with wide opportunities for the application or exploitation of the research results

+ an active commitment to contribute to the effective utilization of the research output by companies or social profit organisations

Main distinctive "Behavioural Additionality" of SBO-platforms relative to pure academic research platforms

Concerns for system failures

- cultural differences and barriers in industry-science relations; lack of mutual trust and compatibility;

- dominant culture of internally oriented academic research;

- lack of industrial backing, commitment or absorption capacity

- risk of ‘lip service’ or opportunistic behaviour.

Challenges and tensions

not necessarily unique to smaller regions but can be reinforced in smaller regional innovation systems:

- Balance between international research networking and the expected focus towards the ‘economic return to the region’;

- Match between the science base and the economy or society. Missing links in the chain of value creation.

- Missing links in the chain of knowledge creation. Gaps may be present in the available expertise within the region.

5. Adaptations in programme design to enhance BA.

  • to have a phased or multi-stage evaluation process in three consecutive selection rounds

    -round 1 : focus on the eligibility and the strategic fit of the proposal within the programme

    -round 2 : focus on the scientific quality of the proposal

    -round 3 : focus on the utilisation or valorisation value of the proposal

    2) to have a balanced expert assessment involving two types of essential expertise

    -international high-level scientific experts with strong scientific expertise in the core of the proposal-highly experienced experts who can judge the economic or social/societal exploitation potential / absorption capacity of the research output in the Flanders region

  • to provide interaction and feedback opportunities for applicants

Internalising BA in the SBO programme design

6. Conclusions

  • BA as a heuristic for policy learning

  • Evaluation: linking system failures to incentives for behavioural change

  • New type of programme managers / new type of agencies

  • BA and Strategy: implicit vs explicit choices

  • Develop BA evaluation methods and models

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