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Mats Benner

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Marina van Geenhuizen, J. Adam Holbrook and Mozhdeh Taheri

This chapter presents the theme, theoretical approaches and overview of the chapters in the book. The theme is the contribution of cities (their actors) to increased sustainability in social-technical systems, eventually by accelerating sustainability improvements. The selected systems are energy, transport and healthcare. Cities may act as the cradle of key inventions, as places of up-scaling and commercialization and as places of quick adoption, though few individual cities take up all these roles. Next, several urban innovation theories are introduced, including agglomeration and cluster theories, and the relational (collaboration) approach, with the aim to ‘position’ the chapters. Specific attention is given to the entrepreneurial ecosystem approach. Complementary approaches are institutional and governance perspectives, in particular with respect to cities acting as institutional innovators. A final approach is the evolutionary approach, as invention, up-scaling, commercialization and adoption of new technology are concerned with long time-lines and manifold uncertainties.

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Jan Fagerberg

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Jan Fagerberg

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The two sides of institutional innovation

Promises and Limits of Democratic Participation in Latin America

Leonardo Avritzer

The introduction defines political/democratic innovation as the capacity of government to express political will and civil society inputs in several formats. Usually, these inputs are linked to the introduction and/or implementation of public policies, through which civil society and the state interact in order to democratize the state itself. It based on this definition that different experiences of innovation will be analysed.

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Edited by Harald Bathelt, Patrick Cohendet, Sebastian Henn and Laurent Simon

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Introduction: The theory of institutional innovation – an overview

Promises and Limits of Democratic Participation in Latin America

Leonardo Avritzer

The introduction of the book discusses the state of the art of the theory of institutional innovation and discusses the main theme of the book in the following terms: because there are good reasons to promote innovation but also to stick with a democratic core of norms without which democracy itself may be endangered, the key question is: how can we learn to separate the positive from the negative elements of institutional innovation?

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Harald Bathelt, Patrick Cohendet, Sebastian Henn and Laurent Simon

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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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.

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Edited by Charlie Karlsson, Martin Andersson and Lina Bjerke