Innovation and Innovation Policy From A System Perspective
Full course description
Innovation plays a crucial role in promoting economic growth the way we have traditionally been thinking about innovation, and it also plays a key role in both understanding and addressing global challenges related to the SDGs.
This course offers an overview of what innovation is and why it is important in various contexts. Who are the relevant actors involved in the innovation process? How can innovation contribute to socio-economic development? How can we guide policymakers around the world to design, monitor and evaluate policy interventions aimed to enhance productivity, sustainable growth or social or environmental goals, depending on the specific objectives or given scope.
In the first week, students will be introduced to the fundamentals of innovation. They will be exposed to the key concepts to identify and describe the innovation characteristics: types of innovation (product and process), the impact of innovation (radical and incremental), sources of innovation (technological and non-technological), as well as bottlenecks and hampering factors. Besides the traditional approach, we will also understand how innovation process can address social agendas, and describe new and emerging issues and types of innovation (social innovation, innovation for inclusive development, public sector innovation, user innovation, user-based innovation, grassroots innovation).
The second week will be dedicated to discussing the cases when the market fails in matching incentives to the value of the innovation activity. A key issue that innovators face comes from an appropriability problem. Students will learn about enhancing capability and catching up, innovation from a firm perspective, the role of the Intellectual Property Right (IPR), and open innovation.
The third week will focus on innovation indicators and innovation scoreboards. The students will explore the challenging question of how to observe and measure innovation at the firm, industry and country level. The objective is to familiarize students with tools and approaches such as innovation surveys, and to measure and interpret the appropriate quantitative indicators measuring the innovation inputs and outputs.
The fourth week we will turn to policy and the role of the state. The National Innovation System will be discussed, along with the Triple Helix concept. Innovation system dynamics and the role of policy along with the role of state will conclude the course.
Throughout the course experts who are currently working in the field related to innovation and development at distinctive international organizations will be invited. The purpose of these guest lectures is to establish good connections between the material covered and their actual application, especially in the context of international organizations.
- Describe in detail the nature of innovation; types of innovation, impact and source of innovation.
- Describe new and emerging issues and types of innovation, e.g. social innovation, innovation for inclusive development, public sector innovation, user innovation, user-based innovation, grassroots innovation.
- Understand the nature of the innovation process in the firm
- Understand the rationale behind innovation policy
- Identify relevant policy instruments related to innovation
- Acquire hands-on-knowledge on a broad range of quantitative indicators to measure the innovation performance (firm, industry, country) and learn how to critically apply them