Thu, 01 Apr | ZOOM online

Panel -I

Innovation Systems: Foundations, Evolution, Development and Global South: PART-I Alan Freeman |Ann Kingiri |Bitrina Diyamet | Carlota Perez | Helena Lastres | Joseph K.J | Judith Sutz | Keun Lee | Lena Trojer | Mammo Muchie |Marina Szapiro | Rasigan Maharajh (Moderator)
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Time & Location

01 Apr, 2:00 pm – 5:30 pm UTC
ZOOM online

About the Event

Panel 1. Innovation Systems - Foundations, Evolution, Development and Global South


ON 01.04.2021

Discussion is proposed under 3 sub-themes as follows

1. Freeman's thinking and its relevance for Global South

Carlota Perez, Alan Freeman,   Judith Sutz, Helena Lastres

2.00   pm - 3.00 pm

2. Policy and Politics

Mammo Muchie, Bitrina Diyamet, Joseph K.J, Ann Kingiri,

3.00pm   - 4.00 pm

3. New horizons for IS approach

Lena Trojer, Marina Szapiro, Keun   Lee, Rasigan Maharajh (Moderator)

4.00   pm - 5.00 pm

The panel will be of 3 hours duration i.e. from 2.00 PM to 5.00 PM GMT (London).

Each panelist would get 15 minutes. 10 minutes for the first round of discussion and 5 minutes for a quick revisit before conclusion.

Moderator: Professor Rasigan maharajh

Opening address: Professor Carlota Perez

Closing remarks: Professor Keun Lee



THEME-1: Freeman's thinking and its relevance for Global South

Carlota Perez | Helena Lastres | Judith Sutz | Alan Freeman

Freeman developed the IS concept standing on the shoulders of giants (like Kondratiev, Schumpeter, or List). In the following set of questions we try to address to what extent there is continuity or disruption with these original ideas in his later works and the works of those who carry forward Freeman’s legacy. We also inquire on the different ways his work is relevant for global South

- It is well known that Christopher Freeman was ‘interested in’ Long Waves. He wrote about them extensively, but appears to have moved away from the concept, after developing the thoughts about ‘long surges’. The interesting debate on ‘up’ and ‘down swings’ and endogenous vs. exogenous origins of these historical events are called into question. In this context, the question is whether Freeman was a defender of ‘Long Waves’?

- We know Freeman was not un-critical, as most of the Neo-Schumpeterians were. “. . . Schumpeter failed to explain why major, radically new technologies should affect the economy in the way which he suggested. As his critics unkindly pointed out, the loss of impetus in the later phase of the Kondratiev wave appeared to be due to the entrepreneurs getting a bit tired after their exertions in the first half of the wave. . . .” (The Determinants of Innovation, 1979). What was Chris’s relation to Schumpeter, and his role in keeping Schumpeter alive and relevant to the modern day?

- Freeman showed an inclination towards affirmative suggestions, based on the lessons he derived by studying science, technology and innovation. He wanted to contribute to improving our world, and innovation policy was the way he found to do so.His systemic understanding of the complexity involved in the 'innovation' theme shows that he was aware of the dangers of the ‘one size-fits-all’ type of policy. Nonetheless, it did not refrain him to suggest that in certain periods of the techno-economic paradigm, like the one we are in,

public and private R&D play an even more important role. R&D has contributed both to the surge of new paradigms and to the catching up of countries within an established paradigm.

What can STI policy do for countries in the Global South? What sectors should be prioritised? What would be the goal of R&D in those areas? What are the risks involved in investing in science and technology but falling into a path of non-purposive Research?


THEME-2: Policy and Politics

Ann Kingiri |Bitrina Diyamet | Joseph K.J | Mammo Muchie

Throughout the freeman lectures, we have seen that the main objective behind discussing theory is to influence public policy agenda with the aim of improving the living conditions of the majority, through economic growth, but also inclusion and mitigation of inequalities and care for the environment. With the following questions we explore different aspects of the policy making process and the way in which IS literature is contributing to it.

-We are experiencing an era of declining nation states in decline and centralised policy making. . In this context, how do you foresee the future of NSI? Can it be used as a device for legitimizing the power in concentrated manner for various reasons?

- Much of Latin America, as other many developing countries are, hit hard by the COVID19-caused pandemic in a context where - after the natural-resource-driven “golden decade” - budgets were already quite limited. In such a context, how can countries in the global South, such as Colombia, who lack innovation capabilities build them up?

- How do we use these theories in the global South to strengthen and improve the innovation systems that we are part of? What is the role of an innovation systems scholar in enabling or promoting change?

- How has the adoption of NSI in large developing countries like part of sub-Saharan Africa India, Brazil Argentina etc addressed developmental challenges?

-Country specific questions -> The National Advisory Council on Innovation SOUTH AFRICA in its report said “. . . NSI has undoubtedly slipped backwards relative to its peer countries (such as South Korea, India and Brazil). There are several reasons for this stagnation in its innovation outputs . . .” (NACI, 2006). In this context it would be useful to discuss in the following lines. Taking the case of SA as an example . . .

· Did adoption of NSI as the policy tool make any significant difference in various countries in the Global South?

· If not, what useful lessons do these experiments offer’?

- concerning many developing countries like China, how do you see the relationship of growth, inequality and regional imbalances from the perspective of NSI?


THEME-3: New horizons for IS approach.

Keun Lee | Lena Trojer |Marina Szapiro | Rasigan Maharajh (Moderator)

How to address new and old challenges of the IS approach? Since early contributions to IS literature, things have changed a lot since then. With this set of questions we hope to find some insights about the new directions that the approach might take.

- Can Artificial intelligence and Industry 4.O contribute to inclusive and sustainable economic development? Do they have a role in transforming informal sector activities in low income countries?

-How to study national innovation systems at different income levels? What constitutes the theoretical core of the NSI-concept? How does it relate to alternative concepts such as triple helix and socio-technical systems?

-Maryann Feldmann in 2013 said that IS is a declining industry [...] which no longer [is] a promising line of researching industry [...] which no longer [is] a promising line of research”. What can we do that new conceptual frameworks such as smart specialization or entrepreneurial ecosystems won´t replace IS among policymakers? What can we do to move the field forward theoretically?

-In his famous book, "The Structure of Scientific Revolutions", Thomas Kuhn wrote that scientific revolutions also depend on a situation where an alternative social group succeeds to overcome the competition of scientific establishment and presents a better and alternative explanation to the scientific phenomena. Taking into account the debate among theories is in part a result of the debate among social groups behind them, how can we address theory change and evolution allowing a greater participation of minorities in theory debate: ie. women, global south, critical thinking?

This document is prepared jointly by Dr. Andrew Robert Cummings and Dr. Veronica Roberts

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