Edited by Bjørn T. Asheim, Arne Isaksen, Claire Nauwelaers and Franz Tödtling
Chapter 5: Innovation Policies for SMEs: An Overview of Policy Instruments
3 Gioacchino Garofoli and Bernard Musyck 5.1 INTRODUCTION This chapter oﬀers an overview of policy instruments identiﬁed within the SMEPOL study. A matrix (Table 5.1) is proposed, which takes into consideration the nature of the tools (ﬁnance, information, advice, and human resources) and the target groups to which these tools are aimed (individual ﬁrms or local and regional productive systems). According to the ﬁndings of Chapter 4, the proposed typology reﬂects the main weaknesses of SMEs regarding innovation, as revealed in the SMEPOL studies of SMEs’ innovation performance. These are (i) ﬁnancial barriers, (ii) lack of accessibility to strategic information, (iii) lack of interaction with knowledge providers, and (iv) lack of adequate human resources. The matrix takes into consideration the nature of the tools and the particular target groups to which the tools are aimed. We diﬀerentiate between two diﬀerent types of target groups in the support schemes of technological transfer: ﬁrms (through schemes directly oriented to them) and the local and regional system (through the use of indirect schemes fostering external economies and the production of public goods). The distribution of diﬀerent innovation schemes in the matrix in Table 5.1 generates the following typology: A. A1. A2. B. B1. B2. B3. Firms-oriented support schemes: support schemes (through grants and loans) for innovation projects, the introduction of new products and R&D projects; introduction of research/technical personnel in SMEs. System-oriented support schemes: policies based on technology centres and schemes fostering technological diﬀusion to...
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