Living up to the Expectations Set by ICT? The Case of Biotechnology Commercialisation in Finland

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This paper examines the dynamics and bottlenecks in the commercialisation of biotechnology in Finland by using the Information and Communications Technology (ICT) industry as a benchmark. The paper considers both ICT and biotechnology within the dynamic life-cycle model of technological revolutions by Perez. For an empirical comparison, it applies the concept of a 'competence bloc' as an interpretive and focusing device. A competence bloc may be defined as a set of actors, functional competences, and institutions that are necessary for large-scale commercialisation and industrialisation of new emerging technologies. In spite of the many differences between the ICT and biotechnology industries, the comparison serves as a heuristic device for pinpointing important features in the framework conditions of commercialisation in biotechnology. The paper shows that a major bottleneck in the development of the biotechnology industry in Finland is the scarcity of industrialists to transform innovations into large-scale production.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: The Research Institute of the Finnish Economy (ETLA),

Publication date: May 1, 2007

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