Foresight and STI Governance, 2019 (1) en-us Copyright 2019 Tue, 02 Apr 2019 17:44:14 +0300 Middle Innovation Trap The middle income trap requires strategies for building technological capabilities to overcome it. This study focuses on the development patterns of two types of technological capabilities: implementation and concept design. A conceptual approach developed from evolutionary economics and innovation systems literature is constructed to distinguish between the types of technological capabilities and how they develop. The approach is mainly applied to the cases of Korea’s development and it highlights the differences in developing implementation and concept design capabilities.The findings of the study emphasize the need for the development of concept design capabilities, which requires (i) setting challenging targets, (ii) developing human resources, infrastructure and knowledge accumulation, and (iii) using an incremental process of trial-and-error and course correction. More broadly, sociocultural institutions may need to be changed to accommodate higher risk-taking but also require different approaches to change. The study extends the concept of technological capabilities by emphasizing the concept design capability that requires trial-and-error beyond R&D activities. Getting Ready for a Post-Work Future Mainstream policy and scientific debates on the future of labor markets are dominated by the “next job title” approach. We propose changing this framework by examining the plausibility of a future vision that eliminates the needs for jobs as such. The article describes major drivers pushing toward a post-work future that are already underway, such as the rise of automation and artificial intelligence, shifts in individual values, and blurring the line between daily life activities. There are also significant obstacles to a post-work future, related to the current central role of work in one’s social life. Even though these obstacles are being addressed it may take decades for this transition to occur. Despite this, in order to overcome related challenges it makes sense to already begin preparing for the transition. In particular, we advocate for a serious policy discussion on the post-work future, the development of programs to manage the transition and promotion the value of purpose and personal futures planning. Smart Specialization as a Tool to Foster Innovation in Emerging Economies: Lessons from Brazil This paper is about the policy concept of smart specialization (RIS3) and its potential for application in emerging economies. This is an important issue as emerging economies continue to struggle against the forces of globalization and targeted investments through RIS3 strategies that may help them boost their (regional) innovation economies. Thus far, RIS3 has mostly been implemented by industrialized EU economies. Due to the structural differences, success in emerging economies may require more extensive groundwork prior to the implementation of an RIS3 strategy. This is specifically noted in the Brazilian example: smart specialization requires careful planning, the country needs to address some of its general issues with lagging innovation before it can focus on successfully implementing an RIS3 strategy. We believe that such an approach would be appropriate for other countries at similar stages of economic development. The Synergy and Cycle Values in Regional Innovation Systems: The Case of Norway The innovation capacity of a system can be measured as the synergy in interactions among its parts. Synergy can be considered as a consequence of negative entropies among three parts of the system. We analyze the development of synergy value in the Norwegian innovation system in terms of mutual information among geographical, sectorial, and size distributions of firms. We use three different techniques for the evaluation of the evolution of synergy over time: rescaled range analysis, DFT, and geographical synergy decomposition. The data was provided by Statistics Norway for all Norwegian firms registered in the database between 2002 and 2014. The results suggest that the synergy at the level of both the country and its seven regions show non-chaotic oscillatory behavior which resonates in a set of natural frequencies. The finding of a set of frequencies implies a complex Triple-Helix structure, composed of many elementary triple helices, which can be theorized in terms of a fractal TH manifold. Innovations, Sustainable Growth and Energetics: Is Leap of Civilization Possible? The article explores the relationship between economic development, technology, and energy consumption. It would be hard to imagine technological and social progress without the energy supply that fuels the growth of people’s well-being. Thanks to the “energy revolution” of the last century, a technological explosion became possible, including the development of an information society. The free supply of energy is the most important factor determining long-term trends in the development of the world economic system. At the same time, the author shows that at a certain stage of economic development, reserves of free energy resources begin to run low. The emergence of energy shortages is becoming probable, which can restrain further progress. The modern concepts of sustainable development are rightly singled out as one of the most important tasks for limiting the use of traditional, non-renewable energy resources. This is important not only in the ecological sense, but also economically. At the same time, the given concept pays special attention to renewable energy sources, the efficiency and volume of which can not yet be compared with the indicators for hydrocarbon use. The author believes that the very concept of sustainable development runs counter to the aims of humanity to maintain progress. Often, technologies that are designed to reduce the wasteful consumption of fossil fuels lead to additional costs. The author suggests that one objectively analyze the risks of implementing the concept of sustainable development and also warns against unfounded illusions and delusions that can plunge society into a prolonged state of stagnation and regression. Innovation Vouchers for Energy and Innovation Systems’ Transition Over the last ten years, innovation vouchers have become a frequently used instrument of the innovation policy mix of EU countries. Vouchers help stimulate collaborative research and innovation activities among small and medium sized enterprises and research organizations. This article analyses the design and outcomes of the innovation voucher instrument in the EU-funded project ener2i. Vouchers were here successfully applied with the dual purpose of coupling innovation stimulation and support for renewable energy and energy efficiency in four target countries: Armenia, Belarus, Georgia, and Moldova. The voucher projects underwent review by internal experts and the whole scheme was reviewed by a panel of experts who were not involved in ener2i. This first pilot group of vouchers in the target countries proved successful in stimulating renewable energy usage and energy efficiency through measures such as market studies, prototyping, and certification. Also the goal of establishing contacts between research and business could be reached. To achieve these results, it proved instrumental that the design of the voucher scheme foresaw a low administrative effort necessary for accommodating the relevant businesses and that the specific features of the target countries were taken into account. Foresight in Higher Education Institutions: Evidence from Poland The rapid transformation of the socioeconomic, political, and technological context predetermines changes in the expectations for higher education institutions that face numerous profound challenges. In order to survive and develop under changing conditions, universities need to drastically rethink their development strategies. The paper substantiates the effectiveness of using foresight for these purposes, which is confirmed by the experience of the project on the development of scenarios for the Faculty of Engineering Management (FEM) of Bialystok Technical University (Poland) for the period up to 2035. This enquiry has resulted in compiling four alternative visions for FEM. By analyzing them one can gain valuable knowledge on both preferable and less-favored alternatives, which on the one hand suggest which actions may lead to their realization, but on the other,indicate specific actions that may lead to the abandonment of undesirable paths in favor of the most conducive vision.