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National Innovation, Indicators and Policy

Edited by Louise Earl and Fred Gault

This book takes stock of what is known about the process of innovation and its effects, and the policy interventions that influence both. It provides insights into future research required to support evidence-based policy-making and makes clear the need to take a systems approach to the analysis of innovation, its outcomes and its impacts.
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Chapter 2: What Do We Know About Innovation and Socio-economic Change? Lessons from the TEARI Project

Jan Fagerberg


* Jan Fagerberg INTRODUCTION Innovation, including its causes and consequences, has been a central topic for scholars, analysts and policy makers for some time. The last two decades have seen the formation of many new research centres devoted to this, particularly in Europe and Asia, often with a cross-disciplinary bent, and several new journals and associations have been founded. The number of publications focusing on innovation has soared (Fagerberg 2004), and several research initiatives, not least within the Framework Programs of the European Union (EU), have made it a priority. Taking these trends as its point of departure, the TEARI project (see Box 2.1) attempted to create an overview and synthesis of the scholarly work on research and innovation, and discuss the implications for the future research agenda, particularly with respect to the EU Framework Programs. This chapter presents, in a condensed form, some of the main conclusions from this work, and raises the question of the extent to which these insights concur with the priorities of the Framework Programs. AN EMERGING AGENDA: FROM THE ‘LINEAR MODEL’ TO INNOVATION SYSTEMS AND BEYOND Over the last two decades, innovation has increasingly become a central topic for policy makers. The reason for this is the crucial role that innovation is assumed to play in income and employment growth (and quality of life in general). It is increasingly recognized that high-quality science and research and development (R&D) are insufficient for the realization of important social objectives. New ideas, important as they may...

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