Development of Policy Driven Innovation Networks
Vliet, J.J. van
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For years, the Dutch government stimulates collaboration networks with policy instru-ments like Innovation Orientated Research Programmes (IOPs). This research aims at providing more insight in the long term development of such policy driven innovation networks. Developments in the themes Paintings and Catalysis were analyzed as both themes experienced policy intervention for decades. From a descriptive analysis over 20 years, it appeared that the type of policy instrument used is of major influence at the composition of public funded research projects. IOP projects consist of more actors than projects executed in IOP sequels. Projects in the generic set of policy instruments are carried out with even smaller consortia. Ten interviews with key actors in the networks of Paintings and Catalysis were conducted which revealed that the government fosters net-work activities, but that industry-university and supplier-customer relations between key players already existed before the IOPs were started. The added value of the public funded research projects is the knowledge generated, the interaction between industry and universities for possible employees and research contracts, and the frequent contacts between participants of the consortia which enables further collaboration without any pol-icy support. To gain more detailed information about dynamics in the participation and role of different types of organizations, a Multi Level Model was used in SPSS. The results of this model indicate that knowledge institutes and large companies are participating very actively compared to SMEs. SMEs are often only involved in projects financed by the generic set of innovation instruments. Over time, large companies play the most impor-tant role in terms of degree centrality. Knowledge institutes are central and connecting actors in terms of betweenness centrality, but this observation is case dependent.