Embracing the Knowledge Economy

Embracing the Knowledge Economy

The Dynamic Transformation of the Finnish Innovation System

New Horizons in the Economics of Innovation series

Edited by Gerd Schienstock

In an astonishingly short period of time, Finland has developed into one of the world’s leading knowledge societies whilst retaining a comprehensive welfare state. The book traces this rapid transformation from a resource-based to a knowledge-based society. The authors describe the country’s strengths and weaknesses in the new economy and demonstrate how Finland has been able to catch-up with the leading industrial countries by exploiting new techno-organizational opportunities. Experts from different fields provide rich empirical material on Finnish industries, firms, regions and institutions, and the role they have played in the transformation process. The book also details the business and economic restructuring which was required, and explores new trends in the country's science, technology and innovation policy.

Preface

Edited by Gerd Schienstock

Subjects: innovation and technology, innovation policy

Extract

This book reflects to a great extent work pursued in the Research Programme on the National Innovation System in Finland launched by Sitra (The Finnish National Fund for Research and Development). The aim of the book is to give a broad overview of the Finnish Innovation System and its recent development trends. Of course, while the various articles cover a great number of aspects, we cannot claim to present a full picture. This is partly due to the fact that the system model itself is a rather vague concept. Instead of aiming for completeness, we have integrated a great variety of different levels of analysis. For example, two articles in the book deal with various organizational aspects on the firm and inter-firm level, which has not been a focal area of research so far. We have put great emphasis on the institutional level, including among others, labour market aspects and competition law. Some of these institutional aspects are not always dealt with in standard textbooks. To include the industrial level goes without saying, as Finland is the most specialized country in telecommunications. In addition, we have included traditional industries and the emerging sector of knowledge-intensive business services. But Finland also provides some examples of successful regional specialization processes, as the two articles on Tampere Region and Turku Region demonstrate. Last but not least, we have included an article on Finnish science and technology policy, which created a favourable environment for the emerging knowledge economy. The title of the book reveals...