EconPapers    
Economics at your fingertips  
 

Combining knowledge bases for system innovation in regions: Insights from an East German case study

Christoph Friedrich and Daniel Feser

No 430, University of Göttingen Working Papers in Economics from University of Goettingen, Department of Economics

Abstract: A growing number of economic geography scholars have discussed the spatial dimensions of sustainability innovation in socio-technical systems to overcome societal, economic, and ecological problems. This research usually focuses on businesses in the knowledge economy and success factors. However, sustainability innovation involves the collaboration of upstreaming process stages and open innovation processes with a broad range of different actors. Innovation intermediaries, such as universities and research institutes, are needed to support and accelerate the transfer of knowledge. Nevertheless, little is known about the influence of the cognitive and institutional diversity of actors on the configuration of knowledge bases required for sustainability innovation. This article presents insights from 16 semi-structured expert interviews conducted in a regional innovation system (RIS) in East Germany. We investigate four innovation intermediaries in the region of Eberswalde in cooperation with the Eberswalde University for Sustainable Development. The analytical framework links the concept of differentiated knowledge bases to sustainability transitions and sustainability-oriented knowledge transfer. Our results show that, first, in the Eberswalde region, the relevant actors involved in regional knowledge transfer predominantly focus on synthetic knowledge bases, such as experience-based knowledge of local area settings. Second, symbolic knowledge bases are crucial and often prerequisites for intermediary organizations to recombine knowledge bases and support the capability to innovate in regional knowledge transfer. Symbolic knowledge contains, in particular, the ability to translate scientific findings to a language that can be understood by the various actors in knowledge transfer. Third, organizational innovation complements social innovation to support innovation on a systemic level and foster change processes.

Keywords: Knowledge bases; system innovation; knowledge transfer; innovation intermediation; sustainability transition (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D02 D80 O12 P48 Q56 R11 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2021
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-cse, nep-env, nep-geo, nep-knm, nep-sbm, nep-tra and nep-ure
References: View references in EconPapers View complete reference list from CitEc
Citations: Track citations by RSS feed

Downloads: (external link)
https://www.econstor.eu/bitstream/10419/242958/1/1771819367.pdf (application/pdf)

Related works:
This item may be available elsewhere in EconPapers: Search for items with the same title.

Export reference: BibTeX RIS (EndNote, ProCite, RefMan) HTML/Text

Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:zbw:cegedp:430

Access Statistics for this paper

More papers in University of Göttingen Working Papers in Economics from University of Goettingen, Department of Economics Contact information at EDIRC.
Bibliographic data for series maintained by ZBW - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics ().

 
Page updated 2022-09-29
Handle: RePEc:zbw:cegedp:430