This chapter provides an overview of major challenges and open questions in the field of innovation research. Eight areas of enquiry are identified that each correspond with one of the parts of the edited volume. The chapter begins by discussing the notion of innovation as a concept and then highlights the interrelationship between innovation and institutions, as well as the interdependence of innovation and creativity. This is followed by three parts that target innovation as a social process: innovation, networking and communities; innovation in permanent spatial settings; and innovation in temporary and virtual settings. Finally, the relationships between innovation, entrepreneurship and market making and wider issues regarding the governance and management of innovation are discussed, followed by some remarks about the unique characteristics of the edited volume.
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Harald Bathelt, Patrick Cohendet, Sebastian Henn and Laurent Simon
Edited by Harald Bathelt, Patrick Cohendet, Sebastian Henn and Laurent Simon
The Economics of an Emergent System Property
This chapter highlights the limits of current approaches to the economics of innovation. It also stresses their role in articulating a theory of innovation as an endogenous process that relies upon the characteristics of the system in which the response of firms to unexpected mismatches in both labour and factor markets takes place. The role of Marshallian contributions to Schumpeterian thinking is stressed.
Richard Hawkins and Knut Blind
This introduction explores the conceptual background and definitions that pertain to understanding standards and standardization in the context of innovation. A general overview is provided of the themes explored in the chapters that follow.
Edited by Franco Malerba, Sunil Mani and Pamela Adams
Franco Malerba, Sunil Mani and Pamela Adams
Technology Displaced by Financial Innovation
Capitalism was not an inevitable historical evolution, but a unique combination of a particular emphasis on the value of individuals and individual property rights. During the past three centuries, as McCloskey has estimated it, individuals in the Western world have become richer by a factor of 30. Schumpeter wrote what was intended to be history of it in terms of economic ‘cycles’, but was weak on the causality of these because he did not give enough importance to institutions. However, in the form of changing property rights, these are the key to the origin and development of capitalism. The wealth that this generated came from technological innovation, but the pace of this slowed after World War I, and after a brief resurgence due to the Second World War, it was progressively replaced by innovations in finance. Capitalism’s power to generate real wealth was eroded from within, and Schumpeter’s prediction of its replacement by socialism became increasingly plausible.