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  1. Innovation systems and technological transitions – towards a common framework Workshop Zurich, April 16, 2007 Jochen Markard Innovation Research in Utility Sectors (CIRUS)

  2. Background • Literature on innovation systems and technological transitions • Largely separate strands of literature • Common theoretical roots • Directed at closely related research questions • Aim of the talk • Focus on TIS and MLP • Concentrate on complementary key issues • Output towards TIS concept

  3. Two perspectives on transformation • Focus on specific innovation processes • How do radical innovations emerge and develop? • What drives, what hinders a new technology? • How to create supportive institutions or to stabilize emerging paths? • Focus on broader transition processes • How do socio-technical transitions come about? • What are the drivers, the barriers? • How to destabilize established paths and enhance variety?

  4. Perspectives and frameworks • Focus on specific innovation processes • Strategic niche management • Technological innovation systems (TIS) • Focus on broader transition processes • Technological regimes and paradigms • Multi-level perspective (MLP) • Ideally: Complementary empirical insights • Open question: towards a common framework or keep concepts separately?

  5. TIS: open issues • How to define and delineate a system? • Focus: national, sectoral, technological • Level of aggregation / delineation • System concept (overall function) • Are there minimum conditions for a system? • How to conceptualize the environment? • TIS life cycle - beginning and ending? • How to deal with actors, actor strategies and agency?

  6. Focus: national, sectoral, technological SSI1 SSI2 NSI1 NSI2 NSI3 SSI3 SSI4

  7. Focus: national, sectoral, technological SSI1 TIS often have an internation or global character (Hekkert et al., in press)but national / regional analyses may still be justified (Bergek et al. 2005) SSI2 NSI1 NSI2 NSI3 SSI3 TS1 SSI4 TS1

  8. Technological innovation systems • How to define and delineate a system? • Focus: national, sectoral, technological • Level of aggregation / delineation • System concept (overall function) • Are there minimum conditions for a system? • How to conceptualize the environment? • TIS life cycle - beginning and ending? • How to deal with actors, actor strategies and agency?

  9. Level of aggregation UPS Base load power supply PAFC Control &monitoring Peak loadheating SOFC … Fuelreformer Cellstack DC/ACconverter Metering devices Heatexchanger …auxiliarycomponents

  10. System delineation • Level of aggregation ( fuel cells example) • one knowledge field – related fields • broad range of applications – specific one • Level of analysis • here: technology / knowledge field vs. product (Carlsson et al. 2002, Bergek et al. 2005) • Two general approaches • Delineation depends on the research questionBergek et al. 2005: boundary setting as a process • ‘System boundaries are somehow out there‘Carlsson et al. 2002: e.g. technology distance indicators;Edquist 2005: define system boundaries in terms of activities

  11. Technological innovation systems • How to define and delineate a system? • Focus: national, sectoral, technological • Level of aggregation / delineation • System concept (overall function) • Are there minimum conditions for a system? • How to conceptualize the environment? • TIS life cycle - beginning and ending? • How to deal with actors, actor strategies and agency?

  12. System concept • Technological system“network of agents interacting in a specific economic / industrial area under a particular institutional infrastructure and involved in the generation, diffusion and utilization of technology”(Carlsson & Stankiewicz 1991) • generation of (new) technology includes radical novelties • diffusion and use of technology  focus on existing technology, incremental improvements • „innovation process“ perspective vs.„production process“ perspective

  13. Technological innovation systems • How to define and delineate a system? • Focus: national, sectoral, technological • Level of aggregation / delineation • System concept (overall function) • Are there minimum conditions for a system? • How to conceptualize the environment? • TIS Life cycle - beginning and ending? • How to deal with actors, actor strategies and agency?

  14. TIS minimum conditions (draft) • Variety of different actors (different strategies, different capabilities) • Division of innovation tasks among actors (supply chain, networks) • Variety of institutions that have emerged from within the system • Early market(s) and competition • Several application contexts or niches

  15. Technological innovation systems • How to define and delineate a system? • Focus: national, sectoral, technological • Level of aggregation / delineation • System concept (overall function) • Are there minimum conditions for a system? • How to conceptualize the environment? • TIS Life cycle - beginning and ending? • How to deal with actors, actor strategies and agency?

  16. Landscape The environment of the TIS ComplementaryTIS Focal technological innovation system CompetingTIS Regime2 Regime1

  17. Technological innovation systems • How to define and delineate a system? • Focus: national, sectoral, technological • Level of aggregation / delineation • System concept (overall function) • Are there minimum conditions for a system? • How to conceptualize the environment? • TIS Life cycle - beginning and ending? • How to deal with actors, actor strategies and agency?

  18. TIS: beginning and ending Degree of technology diffusion regime SSI TIS stabilized TIS niche, network Time Minimum conditions fulfilled

  19. Technological innovation systems • How to define and delineate a system? • Focus: national, sectoral, technological • Level of aggregation / delineation • System concept (overall function) • Are there minimum conditions for a system? • How to conceptualize the environment? • TIS Life cycle - beginning and ending? • How to deal with actors, actor strategies and agency?

  20. Facilitate actor oriented analyses • TIS: actors are key element, different from institutions • Definition of development goal can be used to identify „system actors“ a set of networks of actors and institutions that jointly interact in a specific technological field and contribute to the generation, diffusion and utilization of variants of a new technology and/or a new product • Analysis of innovation activities e.g. on the basis of innov. strategies • Analysis of innovation potential  e.g. on the basis of resources (and strategic intentions)

  21. Wrap up • TIS – MLP: common interests, similar challenges (e.g. delineation) and different weaknesses • Elements of both concepts can be defined in a way as to complement each other • MLP  TIS • Elaborate conceptualization of system environment • TIS  MLP • Explicit actor concept • Mutual benefits • Delineation issues • Qualitative differences between niche, TIS and regime

  22. Relation of concepts SSI1 SSI2 TS1 TS2

  23. Comparison of concepts

  24. How to define a regime? • Proxy for sectors? (Geels 2006) • electricity regime, water supply regime, housing regime • Highlight societal function • ‘Conceptual use’ • Distinguish characteristics of ‘competing’ regimes,e.g. private automobile regime vs. public mass transport • Compare regime and niche characteristics • Challenge: different levels of aggregation • Regime of centralized electricity supply • Nuclear power vs. fossil fuel vs. renewables regime • Wind power regime, onshore vs. offshore regime ...