Article

Sectoral Systems: How and Why Innovation Differs across Sectors

Franco Malerba

in The Oxford Handbook of Innovation

Published in print January 2006 | ISBN: 9780199286805
Published online September 2009 | | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199286805.003.0014

Series: Oxford Handbooks in Business and Management

 Sectoral Systems: How and Why Innovation Differs across Sectors

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This article briefly discusses the previous literature on differences across sectors in innovation and then puts forward the concept of sectoral systems of innovation. It also discusses the basic building blocks of sectoral systems: knowledge, technological domains, and sectoral boundaries; actors, relationships, and networks; and institutions. Furthermore, this article examines the dynamics and transformation of sectoral systems. Finally, it discusses some policy implications and the challenges ahead. This article looks at a large number of sectors that are highly innovative and technologically advanced and have strong links with science, which nevertheless organize innovation very differently: computers, semiconductors, telecommunication equipment and services, software, chemicals, pharmaceuticals and biotechnology, and machine tools. The role of innovation in the dynamics and transformation of these sectors is highly diverse.

Keywords: innovation; sectoral systems; computers; semiconductors; telecommunication equipment; pharmaceuticals and biotechnology; machine tools

Article.  11276 words. 

Subjects: Business and Management ; Innovation

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