Innovation Policy and Technology
Transfer
- Concepts and experiences -
Michael Guth
Workshop on Innovation Policy
Kiev, March 22, 2010
Contents
1. Concepts of innovation and technology transfer
2. Examples of transfer schemes
3.1 Cases from NRW
3.2 Examples from Romania (EU R&D FP/ national funding)
3.3 Business Incubators in Algeria
3. Summary and preliminary conclusions
2. Innovation and Technology Transfer
Innovation can be defined as:
1) „the result of individual and institutional learning processes, the
knowledge created by this and its economic application“
(ZENIT)
2) “Innovation is the ability to take new ideas and translate them into
commercial outcomes by new processes, products or services….)1)
 We only speak about „innovation“ when new
knowledge is actually being applied in new products,
services, organisational procedures or management
procedures!!
1) Nedis, R. and Byler E. (2009), Creating a national innovation framework, in Science progress April(2009)
Transfer
 In this perspective technology (knowledge) transfer is
key for innovation processes to take place! Technology
Transfer and Innovation are two sides of one medal
BUT
How does Technology Transfer and Innovation (TTI)
function??
The concept of innovation
Traditionally the RTD&I systems both in market and in
transition environments were (and still are!?) based
on a rather linear way of thinking technology
transfer/innovation
Basic
Research
Applied
Research
Demonstration/
Feasibility
Product
Market
The concept of innovation
It is not that easy!
Basic
Research
X
Applied
Research
X
Demonstration/
Feasibility
Product
X
Market
It is more complex:
Elements of innovation are:

Non – linear process

Involving different actors (science, firms, governments, public)

Complex feed back loops between the actors
=> Innovation is a system
Innovation System
Competitiveness
Research
Firms
Supply
Demand
Gov.
Institutions
Growth
What does this mean for Innovation Policy?
 Research may no longer be the only focus of science policy
measures
 Pure technology aspects become less important
 Interaction of actors is equally important for the success of
innovation policy (Transfer as critical element)
 A striking new element for policy measures are the links
between actors! (Networks, Cluster, Exchange)
This is why I am presenting in the following
part selected examples for TT-schemes as well
as some lessons deriving from that
3. Examples of TT schemes
3.1 Cases for TT schemes in North Rhine Westphalia
ZukunftsWettbewerb
Ruhrgebiet
PFAU
IPT
Target
SMEs + research
institutions, network
young start ups (prestarting phase)
Know how
transfer
- joint projects
- joint development
- joint application of
knowledge
through “heads”
young graduates bring
university know how
into new firms
Max. 50% funding
rate for winning
projects
via personnel costs
-Max 60% of gross
amounting to part-time
annual salary
placement at university - Max 12,750€ (male)
+ 5000€ for consultancy
and 15,300€ (female)
services
Funding
Project
duration
Selection
process
1 – 3 years
call/competition/
selection committee
2 years
call/competition/
selection committee
SME
through “heads”
4 months – 1 year
On-going proposal
submission
Lessons from NRW 1/2
ZukunftsWettbewerb Ruhrgebiet :
Through the broad orientation all sectors benefited from this
programme (not only the old industries).
There had to be a “spirit of co-operation” between industry and
research institutions. Where this spirit was lacking, projects faced
problems in critical situations.
PFAU:
Due to the high rate of created start ups, stemming from the projects
selected, a lot of new jobs could be created, with a small financial effort
Most of the start ups were build near the respective university
Regions without an university did not benefit from this tool
Lessons from NRW 2/2
IPT:
The personnel transfer (IPT) can also be seen as an instrument
with a good cost-benefit ratio:
Good instrument for regions with structural change
For 40 % of firms the know how transfer was more important than
the funding!
Most of the young graduates (60 %) remained in the firm after the
project (and funding) ceased (one year after the project’s end)
Focus on SMEs
3.2 Examples from Romania
• The use of the European FP for building up networks
(RoDi)
• A national financing scheme for TT infrastructures
FP6 Project: Romanian Days of Innovation RoDI
Partners:
• RO Ministry of Education and Research
• Research Institute for Automation Design (IPA), Bucharest
• University of Agricultural Sciences in Bucharest
• ZENIT
• gtz (German technical assistance corporation)
FP6 Project: Romanian Days of Innovation RoDI
What was it all about?
• Building up of two networks: IST and biotechnology
• Promotion of FP6 and FP7 participation for RO researchers
• Training seminars on FP 7 in all 8 regions
• National FP6/FP7 conferences
Sustainability and enhancement of the IST Network assured via a
National Research Project: Prom IST PC7
Programme of the National Authority for
Scientific Research in support of TTI
infrastructures (INFRATECH):
• Technology and Science Parks
• Business Incubators
• Technology Transfer Centres
• Centres for Technology Information
• Industry Liaison Offices
• Technology Clusters and Brokers
Infratech
•
•
•
2 components:
Institutional build up (1 year)
Specific services (5 years)
Budget: up to 500.000 EUR per project
Network of Romanian TTI structures
Lessons from Romania
 Exploiting synergies between EU and national resources!
 Networking is an important element for innovation. BUT:
depending on the actual infrastructural endowment, the
infrastructure up-grade must not be forgotten.
 Refrain from too strict legal codifications. A law is not really
needed. Can be an obstacle in the implementation.
 Importance of a demand orientated approach. Not all > 60 TTI
entities regard themselves as innovation service providers!
 Financial sustainability is a problem
3.3 Business Incubators in Algeria
• National law for building up and financing incubators (4
years)
• No real activity so far. Introduction of the topic into the
German-ALG technical cooperation agreement (ALG
Ministry and GTZ)
• ZENIT selected as process consultant
• Decision of ALG Ministry to focus on incubators for
technology based start ups
One year from project start to
begin of the implementation
Lancement
Conception
SWOT
Atelier de
lancement
à Alger
(Ministère,
Régions)
Élaboration
du concept
(brouillon)
Déroulement
Concept
(Accord)
Plan de
déroulement
Pilote 1
Pilote 1
Pilote 1
Pilote 1
Pilote 2
Pilote 2
Pilote 2
Pilote 2
Pilote 3
Pilote 3
Pilote 3
Pilote 3
(Monitoring) Supervision & Évaluation
Échange
d‘expériences
Pilote 1
Atelier
Alger
(Ministère,
3 Pilotes)
Pilote 2
Pilote 3
Lessons from Algeria?
 Is a bit early! For comprehensive lessons
 “Codification of TT infrastructures in a (national) law again turned
out to be a hindrance factor for efficient implementation”
 “Also: good networking (locally/nationally) requires sufficient knot
points: minimum level of TT-infrastructural endowment is
necessary”
 “Money (from the law), actors (local gov., univ. + business
organisations) and certain problem pressure (high
unemployment) were not sufficient for getting the process started.
A trigger from a “fourth force” (process consultant) was necessary”
4. Summary and Conclusions
 Innovation without Technology/Know how transfer is not possible!
 TT represents a key element of innovation policy (different
motivations of the actors)
 We must not expect too much (financially, technologically)
 Incremental but permanent flows of knowledge and subsequent
application may not be so appealing but still they are very efficient
 This has consequences for TT-schemes: smaller projects, broad
approaches (technologically), involving people (transfer through
heads, networks, local clusters, …)
Specific Transition aspects?

Most of the points discussed are general! They apply for Germany as
much as for Ukraine

Legal framework is an issue! Transition states tend to codify too much
(national law for incubators, national cluster law, …):
Think twice before you issue a new law in the TTI-field

Networking (triple helix) versus bad-buddy-groups (closed shops,
nepotism, cartels/trusts):
Organise broad participation – even on the cost of efficiency.
Identify project forms which create local/regional network (RIS,
foresights, benchmarking workshops)
Thank you very much for your attention!
Contact:
Michael Guth
Phone ++49-208-30004-56
Mail: mg(at)zenit.de
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Innovation Policy and Technology Transfer - BILAT-UKR