Edited by Franco Malerba and Nicholas S. Vonortas
Chapter 9: European Policy Favouring Networks in ICT
9. European policy favouring networks in ICT Stefano Breschi, Lorenzo Cassi, Franco Malerba and Nicholas S. Vonortas 1. INTRODUCTION This chapter advocates the use of social network analysis to evaluate aspects of public programmes supporting research and development. For the specific empirical analysis, the chapter draws on a recent study that appraised the partnership and knowledge networks created locally and globally in relation to the Information Society Research and Technological Development (IST-RTD) programmes of the Sixth Research Framework Programme (FP6) of the European Community. It is found that the examined IST-RTD programmes play an important role in generating and diffusing knowledge by managing to attract key industry actors and by creating and increasing network connectivity. We argue that public policy should try to facilitate the development of more European organizations that can be characterized as Global Network Hubs and to draw larger numbers of the most technologically dynamic small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) into these programmes. The typical appraisals of RTD expenditures have tended to concentrate in the past on the additionality of public funding in terms of either the resources added into the system (input additionality) and/or the extra private and social returns created (output/outcome additionality). Such appraisals have, however, tended to miss the sustainable effects beyond the infusion of resources and/or the extraction of outputs that such investments create, such as improving the competencies, capabilities, organizational structures and strategies of firms (behavioural additionality). This chapter focuses on the latter. In today’s globally competitive and fast changing environment, most...
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