Systemic Linkages Between Knowledge and the Market
New Horizons in the Economics of Innovation series
Edited by Blandine Laperche, Dimitri Uzunidis and G. N. von Tunzelmann
Chapter 3: Proprietary vs. Open-Access Dimensions of Knowledge
Marc Isabelle 1. INTRODUCTION Public research systems have experienced deep transformations worldwide since the 1980s in connection with the competitiveness agenda. In European countries, they are now strongly challenged by the Lisbon strategy of the knowledge economy (a modern version of the competitiveness agenda) as prominent engines of knowledge production and dissemination. Among the changes that have taken place, researchers are advised to incorporate more consideration of economic and societal needs in their activities, as well as providing more protection for their results and working in closer connection with private ﬁrms (Ziman 1994; David 2000). Some scholars advocate a new social contract for science on this basis (Gibbons 1999), whereas others have expressed concerns about the pitfalls that may arise from this shift (Florida and Cohen 1999; Florida 1999; David 2003). In the context of increased attention paid to technological innovation as a driver of economic growth, it seems quite obvious why one would like the public research sector to work more interactively with ﬁrms and the society at large: public research organizations (PROs) would be better aligned with and more responsive to ﬁrms’ needs, the knowledge and technologies they develop would be transferred more rapidly and eﬀectively to ﬁrms, etc. However, for more subtle reasons, the greater relevance of public research may inadvertently produce eﬀects that have negative impacts on the bottom-line of the social rate of innovation. These negative consequences can be understood in terms of departures from a normative model of how the scientiﬁc...
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