An extensive literature exists on regional innovation and knowledge-driven economic development, much of it claiming to be prescriptive. Yet attempts to translate insights from this literature into effective policies have met with mixed success. We identify some shortcomings in how much of this literature conceptualises policy and argue that a richer understanding of how real policy processes play out in the development of real places is a prerequisite for making more realistic and potentially effective prescriptions in the future, with particular emphasis on agency, institutional change, and multi-level, multi-actor dynamics.
Elvira Uyarra and Kieron Flanagan
Kieron Flanagan, Ian Miles and Matthias Weber
Paul Cunningham, Jakob Edler, Kieron Flanagan and Philippe Larédo
As innovation policy instruments are never applied in isolation, this chapter reviews the evidence on policy mixes and the interplay of instruments in innovation policy. The chapter starts with a multi-dimensional conceptualisation of mixes and interplay, in particular distinguishing between designed versus emergent mixes. Overall, the evidence and evaluation practice as to policy mix and interplay are scarce, reflecting not only the challenges of analysing the interplay of instruments, but also the general neglect in policy making to take interplay into consideration. The chapter first presents and analyses evidence from the few evaluations which have explicitly examined how instruments interact, focusing on interplay between direct and indirect measures as well as supply and demand measures. In general, the additive effect of multiple measures targeting the same actor groups is limited. Secondly, the chapter looks at evidence from reviews of policy mixes at the country or system level. Those country reviews have mainly been conducted under the auspices of the OECD or the EU. They highlight the trends of applying policy mixes and comment on their appropriateness, identify common policy gaps and coordination issues, but rarely deliver hard evidence of system-wide interplay. Thirdly, the review looks at instances where policies or instruments have been deliberately used together, as designed mixes across policy institutions or as the portfolios of specific agencies. The chapter finally draws lessons as to policy mix practice using the conceptual framework developed.