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An institutional approach to research on public procurement of innovation

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The role of public procurement as a means to stimulate innovation has been increasingly emphasized during the last few years. The general argument is that, by applying intelligent demand, public agencies can stimulate private sector innovation that will eventually sustain competitive advantage in a global economy. The emphasis on public procurement used as an innovation policy instrument challenges current institutional practices and skills. The article is based on the assumption that the innovation research community could inform this policy discourse, in particular by drawing on institutional theory, but in order to fully utilize this potential, further revision of the research perspectives seen is needed. The article therefore discusses an institutional approach based on three modes: “multilevel institutional analysis”, “endogenous and exogenous institutions” and “institutions as rationalities”, arguing that such an approach would help to increase innovation research quality and policy relevance.
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Keywords: innovation; innovation policy; institutions; public procurement; public procurement of innovation; research

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Business and Management,Aalborg University, Fibigerstraede,Aalborg O,4 DK-9220, Denmark

Publication date: 01 September 2012

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