An evolutionary analysis of the innovation policy domain: Is there a paradigm shift?
Researchers focus on understanding the nature of ecosystems and societies as well as explaining how paradigms change. These efforts are presented and disseminated through scholarly work in scientific literature. The pool of knowledge generated through databases allows one to track how our understanding changes and how paradigms shift through time. The present study is concerned with the domain of innovation policy, which is affected directly by societal and technological change and is a good archetype for demonstrating the scientific change perspective. In recent years, scientometrics has been frequently used to measure and analyze progress in science, technology and innovation. This study makes use of a combination of scientometric analysis and evolutionary framework analysis to demonstrate the evolution of innovation policy domain. Kuhn’s seminal approach is applied for classifying and interpreting the phases across the evolution of the domain within a 30-year timeframe. The analysis demonstrates that the innovation policy domain is at the “crisis stage” as a result of ongoing with transformations in the society, technology, economy and policy. These transformations affect both supply and demand sides of innovation and call for an evolution in the innovation policy domain. Although this by no means represents that the innovation policy domain is in a “deadlock”, the present study asserts that there is a new quest in innovation policy by adapting, re-framing or re-constructing the scope of the domain. The anticipated paradigm shift is expected to lead to a more de-centralized and distributed understanding of the world for innovation policy making.