Implications for Energy Innovation from the Chemical Industry

Ashish Arora and Alfonso Gambardella

in Accelerating Energy Innovation

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print May 2011 | ISBN: 9780226326832
Published online February 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226326856 | DOI:
Implications for Energy Innovation from the Chemical Industry

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This chapter explores the sources of innovation in the chemical industry, an industry that resembles some aspects of the energy sector in the chemical industry's focus on process development, and whose early development was significantly more global than those of the others. It describes the switch in coal-based raw materials to those derived from oil and gas, and briefly analyzes two government programs—synthetic rubber and synfuels—that have attempted to promote innovation. In the case of chemical innovation, energy innovation is more likely to be successful and effective when private research and development (R&D) from diverse sources is stimulated and strong patents protection is combined with robust antitrust enforcement. The chapter discusses the specialized engineering firms that have played an important role in the diffusion of important innovations and the effects that government policies have had on fostering innovation.

Keywords: chemical industries; innovation; research and development; engineering firms; government programs

Chapter.  11105 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Economic Development and Growth

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