Successfully reported this slideshow.
We use your LinkedIn profile and activity data to personalize ads and to show you more relevant ads. You can change your ad preferences anytime.
Direction, Distribution, Diversity!
pluralising progress
in innovation, sustainability and development




               ...
The Missing Politics of Direction
all innovation is good…
       “For the objectives of the Lisbon Strategy …
            ...
Politics-Denial in Technology Governance

conventional „linear‟ understandings of
technology change still prevail in
mains...
Politics-Denial in Technology Governance

conventional „linear‟ understandings of
technology change still prevail in
mains...
Politics-Denial in Technology Governance

conventional „linear‟ understandings of
technology change still prevail in
mains...
Politics-Denial in Technology Governance

conventional „linear‟ understandings of
technology change still prevail in
mains...
Technological Progress as Optimisation
diversity converges to function-specific optimality     space of technological
    ...
Technological Progress as Social Choice
                                                        multiple
                 ...
Economics and the Normativity of Direction
                                                                    innovation
...
Historic ‘Branching Paths’
                                                       particular
                             ...
Historic ‘Branching Paths’
                                                       particular
                             ...
Historic ‘Branching Paths’
                                                        particular
                            ...
Alternative ‘Possible Futures’
                                                                 particular
               ...
Alternative ‘Sustainable Energy Strategies’
Many possible innovation pathways to ‘energy sustainability’:




            ...
Alternative ‘Sustainable Energy Strategies’
No shortage of possible innovation paths to energy sustainability:

   demand ...
Alternative ‘Sustainable Energy Strategies’
No shortage of possible innovation paths to energy sustainability:

   demand ...
Alternative ‘Sustainable Energy Strategies’
No shortage of possible innovation paths to energy sustainability:

   demand ...
The Missing Politics of Choice

eg: Sir David King, former UK Chief Scientist

“…We have no alternative to nuclear power …...
The Politics of Expectation

Directions for technology change are driven by expectations

    1:    assume future electric...
The Complicity of Innovation Studies

despite seminal role in substantiating mechanisms of closure,
conventional innovatio...
Directions for ‘Development Transitions’

Historically, even ‘transitions’ analysis neglects questions of ‘direction’

Key...
Distributed Innovation for Development

Where transitions are driven by the interests of marginalised people,
attention is...
But innovation studies neglects civil society…

Blind spot in social and political science of innovation (Smith, 05)

- po...
…tho’ civil society doesn’t neglect innovation!

    Socio-technical’
    landscape
                                      ...
…but civil society doesn’t neglect technology!

     Socio-technical’
     landscape
                                     ...
…but civil society doesn’t neglect technology!

        Socio-technical’
        landscape
                               ...
…but civil society doesn’t neglect technology!
  SOCIO-TECHNICAL
      Socio-technical’
       LANDSCAPE
        landscape...
…but civil society doesn’t neglect technology!
  SOCIO-TECHNICAL
      Socio-technical’
       LANDSCAPE
        landscape...
…but civil society doesn’t neglect technology!
  SOCIO-TECHNICAL
      Socio-technical’
       LANDSCAPE
        landscape...
…but civil society doesn’t neglect technology!
  SOCIO-TECHNICAL
      Socio-technical’
       LANDSCAPE
        landscape...
…but civil society doesn’t neglect technology!
  SOCIO-TECHNICAL
      Socio-technical’
       LANDSCAPE
        landscape...
Conventional Policy Dynamics

                                  „lock-in‟ to innovation
        POSSIBLE                tr...
Plural Roles for Diversity

                           multivalent dynamics in
       POSSIBLE
       MULTIPLE            ...
www.anewmanifesto.org

Our vision is a world where science and technology work more directly for social
justice, poverty a...
Direction, Distribution, Diversity! pluralising progress in innovation, sustainability and development
Upcoming SlideShare
Loading in …5
×

Direction, Distribution, Diversity! pluralising progress in innovation, sustainability and development

822 views

Published on

Presentation by Andy Stirling to a seminar at
Department of Innovation Sciences
Technical University Eindhoven, 15th April, 2010.

For more about Innovation, Sustainability, Development: A New Manifesto see http://www.anewmanifesto.org

  • Be the first to comment

  • Be the first to like this

Direction, Distribution, Diversity! pluralising progress in innovation, sustainability and development

  1. 1. Direction, Distribution, Diversity! pluralising progress in innovation, sustainability and development Andy Stirling SPRU – science and technology policy research presentation to seminar at Department of Innovation Sciences www.anewmanifesto.org Technical University Eindhoven, 15th April, 2010
  2. 2. The Missing Politics of Direction all innovation is good… “For the objectives of the Lisbon Strategy … pro-innovation action [is] a priority.” - European Parliament “[we need] more `pro-innovation‟ policies …” - EC President, José Manuel Barroso all technology is good… “[there is] an anti-technology culture …a pro- technology culture must be created…” - Council for Science and Technology and determined solely by science… GM: “… this government's approach is to make decisions … on the basis of sound science - Tony Blair Chemicals: “ …sound science will be the basis of the Commission's legislative proposal…” - EC RTD Commissioner, Philippe Busquin
  3. 3. Politics-Denial in Technology Governance conventional „linear‟ understandings of technology change still prevail in mainstream technology governance FUTURE eg: “history is a race to advance technology” - UK Royal Academy of Engineering time „anti-technology protestors‟ are “… members of the 'flat earth society‟, opposed to modern economics, modern technology, modern science, modern life itself.” – UN DDG PAST
  4. 4. Politics-Denial in Technology Governance conventional „linear‟ understandings of technology change still prevail in mainstream technology governance FUTURE eg: “history is a race to advance technology” - UK Royal Academy of Engineering time „anti-technology protestors‟ are “… members of the 'flat earth society‟, opposed to modern economics, modern technology, modern science, modern life itself.” – UN DDG PAST Treats innovation as homogeneous: no distinctions … no alternatives… no politics … no choice !
  5. 5. Politics-Denial in Technology Governance conventional „linear‟ understandings of technology change still prevail in mainstream technology governance FUTURE eg: “history is a race to advance technology” - UK Royal Academy of Engineering time „anti-technology protestors‟ are “… members of the 'flat earth society‟, opposed to modern economics, modern technology, modern science, modern life itself.” – UN DDG PAST Treats innovation as homogeneous: no distinctions … no alternatives … no politics … no choice ! Scope for debate restricted to: yes or no? … how much? how fast?‟ … who leads?
  6. 6. Politics-Denial in Technology Governance conventional „linear‟ understandings of technology change still prevail in mainstream technology governance FUTURE eg: “history is a race to advance technology” - UK Royal Academy of Engineering time „anti-technology protestors‟ are “… members of the 'flat earth society‟, opposed to modern economics, modern technology, modern science, modern life itself.” – UN DDG PAST Treats innovation as homogeneous: no distinctions … no alternatives … no politics … no choice ! Scope for debate restricted to: yes or no? … how much? how fast?‟ … who leads? Seriously neglects questions over: which way? …what alternatives? says who? …why?
  7. 7. Technological Progress as Optimisation diversity converges to function-specific optimality space of technological possibilities time Mainstream policy representations of technology change: - „sound science‟ - material constraints, - technical convergence - market equilibrium yield „optimal‟ technological / institutional configurations
  8. 8. Technological Progress as Social Choice multiple diverging directions time Common picture arising in all studies of technology in society – – “it‟s the other way around!”
  9. 9. Economics and the Normativity of Direction innovation is „vector‟ not „scalar‟ time But: a diversity of processes ‘close down’ possible directions of change economics: homeostasis (Sahal, 85) lock-in (Arthur, 89) regimes (Nelson & Winter, 77) trajectories (Dosi, 82) history: contingency (Mokyr, 92) momentum (Hughes 83) path-dependence (David, 85) path creation (Karnoe, 01) philosophy/politics: autonomy (Winner, 77) closure (Feenberg, 91) entrapment (Walker, 01) alignment (Geels, 02) social studies: shaping (Bijker, 85) co-construction (Misa, 03) expectations (Lente, 00) imaginaries (Jasanoff, 05)
  10. 10. Historic ‘Branching Paths’ particular trajectories „lock in‟ time Many familiar examples of repeated ‘lock-in’ to poor choices QWERTY keyboards … light water reactors … … military systems …
  11. 11. Historic ‘Branching Paths’ particular trajectories „lock in‟ time Many familiar examples of repeated ‘lock-in’ to poor choices Narrow Gauge Railways … urban transport … … internal combustion engine …
  12. 12. Historic ‘Branching Paths’ particular trajectories „lock in‟ time Many familiar examples of repeated ‘lock-in’ to poor choices VHS and Betamax … media standards … … Windows software… Deliberately or not – societies choose their technological futures stakes rise with globalisation, harmonisation, standardisation
  13. 13. Alternative ‘Possible Futures’ particular trajectories „lock in‟ time Contending priorities & plural knowledges yield diverse pathways: eg: seed production: – „GM‟: transgenics / syngenics / apomixis; – marker assisted breeding; – commercial industrial hybrids; – participatory breeding – public open source research; All are technically feasible and potentially economically viable, but not all fully realisable together, especially in globalised world
  14. 14. Alternative ‘Sustainable Energy Strategies’ Many possible innovation pathways to ‘energy sustainability’: … which directions will we go?
  15. 15. Alternative ‘Sustainable Energy Strategies’ No shortage of possible innovation paths to energy sustainability: demand restructuring? behaviour change? efficient end use? service reform? renewable energy? carbon capture and storage? nuclear power? … which directions will we go?
  16. 16. Alternative ‘Sustainable Energy Strategies’ No shortage of possible innovation paths to energy sustainability: demand restructuring? behaviour change? centralised resources? efficient end use? transport fuels? service reform? low temperature heat? renewable energy? distributed generation? carbon capture and storage? nuclear power? … which directions will we go?
  17. 17. Alternative ‘Sustainable Energy Strategies’ No shortage of possible innovation paths to energy sustainability: demand restructuring? small hydro? osmotic gradient? behaviour change? centralised resources? offshore wave? subsea wave? efficient end use? transport fuels? onshore wave? tidal stream? service reform? low temperature heat? onshore wind? renewable energy? offshore wind? distributed generation? high altitude kites? carbon capture and storage? roof-integrated PV? biomass CHP? nuclear power? municipal waste CHP? geothermal CHP? … which directions will we go?
  18. 18. The Missing Politics of Choice eg: Sir David King, former UK Chief Scientist “…We have no alternative to nuclear power … … if there were other sources of low carbon energy I would be in favour, but there aren„t” Independent, 2006 “…We need to do everything… we cannot afford not to use nuclear power.” BBC Radio 4, 2007 eg: David MacKay, DECC chief scientist „Britain must go nuclear‟…“If the aim is to get off fossil fuels, we need nuclear power or solar power generated in other countries‟ deserts, or both.” Independent, 2009
  19. 19. The Politics of Expectation Directions for technology change are driven by expectations 1: assume future electricity infrastructures shift towards distributed, low-voltage, smart-metered electricity systems, subject to intelligent control and flexible supply contracts invest in small scale renewables and energy service innovations 2: assume persistence of traditional large centralised steam-cycle power stations, presiding over high-voltage transmission systems, with one-way distribution and conventional tariffs incremental innovation along traditional fossil and nuclear paths Determinist ‘sound science’ / ‘pro innovation’ language not innocent … but moulds choices and closes politics
  20. 20. The Complicity of Innovation Studies despite seminal role in substantiating mechanisms of closure, conventional innovation studies close down expectations over general dynamics (as well as particular outcomes) of progress focus is on fostering: - performance (Dayananda 07) - cost/benefit (Layard, Glaister 94) - rate of innovation (Chakravorti 01) - efficiency (Grupp 97) - innovation systems (Fagerberg 06) - first movers (Lieberman 88) - catching up (Santangelo 06) - forging ahead (Abramowitz 86) - diffusion (Rogers 03) - leapfrogging (Brezis 93) - advance (Nelson 02) - agency (Rosenberg 02) or avoiding: - barriers (Parente 94) - falling behind (Abramowitz 86) - laggards (Aghion 06) - stranding (Farrell 86) innovation thus tends to be addressed falsely as scalar quantity, rather than vector quality – ie: without the property of direction
  21. 21. Directions for ‘Development Transitions’ Historically, even ‘transitions’ analysis neglects questions of ‘direction’ Key focus: enabling chosen technology to move from niche to regime. Policy challenge seen more as instrumental „management‟ under self- evident goals, than of politics over the normative priorities themselves. Recent critiques highlight importance of political questions over „direction‟ (eg: Smith et al, 2005; Shove and Walker, 2007). Nowhere is this more salient than in case of the poorest countries - 30% of global public research is on the military - only 10% of world health research on diseases that affect 90% - renewable energy receives only small fraction of nuclear research Questions of direction are crucial for future development transitions
  22. 22. Distributed Innovation for Development Where transitions are driven by the interests of marginalised people, attention is especially important to potential for distributed innovation Examples of transformative distributed innovation for development: - malaria bednets and vaccination programmes in Africa; - slum-dwellers securing water supplies in Latin America; - participatory rice breeding in Southeast Asia; - health practitioners combine local and biomedical methods in Africa; - „bottom of the pyramid‟ markets in Asia, Africa and Latin America. Organised social movements can play an especially important role - European nuclear activists: windpower, green housing, fuel poverty; - S. African HIV activists: affordable medicines and healthcare; - Indian „Honey Bee Network‟ of grassroots entrepreneurs: palm tree climbing; bicycle-powered washing; open source IP-sharing.
  23. 23. But innovation studies neglects civil society… Blind spot in social and political science of innovation (Smith, 05) - political science: „systems of production‟, but not innovation (Hollingsworth 97) - social movements research: ideas, institutions, interests – not technology (Smith, 05) - social studies of technology: only general „pressure‟ (Poel, 00; Jamison, 99) - multi-level model acknowledges role … (Schot, 03; Geels, 08) …but pays insufficient attention to role of politics and power (Smith et al, 05) Restricted focus in innovation systems research - explicitly excluded in „triple helix‟ (government, industry, academia) (Etzkowitz 05) - sidelined as general factor in healthy economy (Fukuyama 00) - relevant only at lower levels of regional systems of innovation (Cook 98) - implicated indirectly thro‟ small business „partnerships‟ in development (Hall 01) - on „democracy‟: focus is on education system, not civil society (Lundvall 09)
  24. 24. …tho’ civil society doesn’t neglect innovation! Socio-technical’ landscape L an scap d el o men s d e ev p t pt p u ressu o ex st i n reg me, re n i g i wh ch o en u , i p s p creat i n wi n o g d ws o o p rt u i t y fo n v t i es f po n r o el M ark s, u et ser preferen ces Socio- technical Indust ry S ci ence regime P o i cy l Cu t u l re T ech o o y nl g S o o ech i cal reg me i s ‘d n ci -t n i y ami cal l y st ab e’. l New co fi g rat i o n u On d fferen d men o s t h i t i si n ere are o g i n p cesses n o g ro ad an ag o ‘wi n v t e f Ad u men s o j st t ccu E l emen s are g u l y l i n ed t rad al k an st ab l i se i n a d mi n t d d i o an e
  25. 25. …but civil society doesn’t neglect technology! Socio-technical’ landscape L an scap d el o men s d e ev p t SOCIO- pt p u ressu o ex st i n reg me, re n i g i TECHNICAL wh ch o en u , i p s p creat i n wi n o g d ws REGIME o o p rt u i t y fo n v t i es f po n r o el M ark s, u et ser preferen ces Socio- technical Indust ryincumbent ence saturation / S ci inertia regime P o i cy l Cu t u l re T ech o o y nl g S o o ech i cal reg me i s ‘d n ci -t n i y ami cal l y st ab e’. l New co fi g rat i o n u On d fferen d men o s t h i t i si n ere are o g i n p cesses n o g ro ad an ag o ‘wi n v t e f Ad u men s o j st t ccu E l emen s are g u l y l i n ed t rad al k an st ab lafter n a d mi n t d d i i se i Geels, 2002 e o an
  26. 26. …but civil society doesn’t neglect technology! Socio-technical’ landscape L an scap d el o men s d e ev p t SOCIO- pt p u ressu o ex st i n reg me, re n i g i TECHNICAL wh ch o en u , i p s p creat i n wi n o g d ws REGIME o o p rt u i t y fo n v t i es f po n r o el M ark s, u et ser preferen ces Socio- technical Indust ryincumbent ence saturation / S ci inertia regime P o i cy l Cu t u l re alignment / stabilisation / T ech o o y nl g momentum TECHNOLOGICAL oci o-t echni cal regi me i s ‘dynami cal l y st abl e’. S New co fi g rat i o n u NICHES di fferent di mensi ons t here are ongoi ng processes TECHNOLOGICAL On ad an ag o ‘wi n v t e f NICHES Ad u men s o j st t ccu experimentation / learning E l emen s are g u l y l i n ed t rad al k an st ab lafter n a d mi n t d d i i se i Geels, 2002 e o an
  27. 27. …but civil society doesn’t neglect technology! SOCIO-TECHNICAL Socio-technical’ LANDSCAPE landscape environmental drivers / political pressures driversevel opment s environmental L an scap d d e / political pressures re on exi st i ng regi me, pt p u ressu SOCIO- TECHNICAL wh ch o en u , i p s p creat i n wi n o g d ws REGIME o o p rt u i t y fo n v t i es f po n r o el M ark s, u et ser preferen ces Socio- technical Indust ryincumbent ence saturation / S ci inertia regime P o i cy l Cu t u l re alignment / stabilisation / T ech o o y nl g momentum TECHNOLOGICAL oci o-t echni cal regi me i s ‘dynami cal l y st abl e’. S New co fi g rat i o n u NICHES di fferent di mensi ons t here are ongoi ng processes TECHNOLOGICAL On ad an ag o ‘wi n v t e f NICHES Ad u men s o j st t ccu experimentation / learning E l emen s are g u l y l i n ed t rad al k an st ab lafter n a d mi n t d d i i se i Geels, 2002 e o an
  28. 28. …but civil society doesn’t neglect technology! SOCIO-TECHNICAL Socio-technical’ LANDSCAPE landscape environmental drivers / political pressures driversevel opment s environmental L an scap d d e / political pressures re on exi st i ng regi me, pt p u ressu SOCIO- TECHNICAL wh ch o en u , i p s p creat i n wi n o g d ws REGIME o o p rt u i t y fo n v t i es f po n r o el M ark s, u et ser preferen ces Socio- technical Indust ryincumbent ence saturation / S ci inertia regime P o i cy l Cu t u l re alignment / stabilisation / T ech o o y nl g momentum TECHNOLOGICAL oci o-t echni cal regi me i s ‘dynami cal l y st abl e’. S New co fi g rat i o n u NICHES di fferent di mensi ons t here are ongoi ng processes TECHNOLOGICAL On ad an ag o ‘wi n v t e f NICHES Ad u men s o j st t ccu experimentation / learning E l emen s are g u l y l i n ed t rad al k an st ab lafter n a d mi n t d d i i se i Geels, 2002 e o an
  29. 29. …but civil society doesn’t neglect technology! SOCIO-TECHNICAL Socio-technical’ LANDSCAPE landscape environmental drivers / political pressures driversevel opment s environmental L an scap d d e / political pressures re on exi st i ng regi me, pt p u ressu SOCIO- TECHNICAL wh ch o en u , i p s p creat i n wi n o g d ws REGIME o o p rt u i t y fo n v t i es f po n r o el M ark s, u et ser preferen ces Socio- technical Indust ryincumbent ence saturation / S ci inertia windows of opportunity / regime breakthrough / reconfiguration P o i cy l Cu t u l re alignment / stabilisation / T ech o o y nl g momentum TECHNOLOGICAL oci o-t echni cal regi me i s ‘dynami cal l y st abl e’. S New co fi g rat i o n u NICHES di fferent di mensi ons t here are ongoi ng processes TECHNOLOGICAL On ad an ag o ‘wi n v t e f NICHES Ad u men s o j st t ccu experimentation / learning E l emen s are g u l y l i n ed t rad al k an st ab lafter n a d mi n t d d i i se i Geels, 2002 e o an
  30. 30. …but civil society doesn’t neglect technology! SOCIO-TECHNICAL Socio-technical’ LANDSCAPE landscape environmental drivers / political pressures driversevel opment s new regime affects environmental L an scap d d e / political pressures re on exi st i ng regi me, pt p u ressu SOCIO- landscape TECHNICAL wh ch o en u , i p s p creat i n wi n o g d ws REGIME o o p rt u i t y fo n v t i es f po n r o el M ark s, u et ser preferen ces Socio- technical Indust ryincumbent ence saturation / S ci inertia windows of opportunity / regime breakthrough / reconfiguration P o i cy l Cu t u l re alignment / stabilisation / T ech o o y nl g momentum TECHNOLOGICAL oci o-t echni cal regi me i s ‘dynami cal l y st abl e’. S New co fi g rat i o n u NICHES di fferent di mensi ons t here are ongoi ng processes TECHNOLOGICAL On ad an ag o ‘wi n v t e f NICHES Ad u men s o j st t ccu experimentation / learning E l emen s are g u l y l i n ed t rad al k an st ab lafter n a d mi n t d d i i se i Geels, 2002 e o an
  31. 31. …but civil society doesn’t neglect technology! SOCIO-TECHNICAL Socio-technical’ LANDSCAPE landscape - movement building - environmental drivers / political climate - institutional structure - awareness raising - politicalchange anddriversevel optrade patterns culture pressures scape d / - ment s environmental L international trade political pressures re on exi st i ng regi me, SOCIO- pt p u ressu regulation TECHNICAL wh ch o en u , i p s p creat i n wi n o g d ws REGIME o o p rt u i t y fo n v t i es f po n r o el M ark s, u et ser preferen ces Socio- technical -Indust ryincumbent ence saturation / consumer boycotts S ci inertia windows of opportunity / markets - policy shift - mass regime - protest and lobbying breakthrough / reconfiguration - behaviour change - training demand P o i cy l - counter-expertisel t ure Cu -alignment / stabilisation / community mobilisation T ech o o y nl g -momentum green consumption TECHNOLOGICAL oci o-t echni cal regi me i s ‘dynami cal l y st abl e’. S New co fi g rat i o n u NICHES di fferent di mensi ons t here are ongoi ng processes TECHNOLOGICAL On ad an ag o ‘wi n v t e f NICHES - activist visions - DIY inventors Adj ust ment s occu experimentation / learning - grassroots innovation - early adopters E l emen s are g u l y l i n ed t rad al k Elements of ‘political judo’ (Parmentier inchemicals; ecologicalabiGM agricultureant de eg: renewables / nuclear; green / chlorine UN, 2002) an st / l i se i n Smith, n d after a domi 2006
  32. 32. Conventional Policy Dynamics „lock-in‟ to innovation POSSIBLE trajectories favoured by GOVERNANCE PATHWAYS incumbent interests COMMITMENTS complex, dynamic, inter- coupled and mutually- IIIIII reinforcing eco-socio- $ technical configurations narrow scope „closed down‟ of attention SOCIAL discourse APPRAISAL risk / cost-benefit analysis unitary „sound scientific‟ multiple practices, and disciplinary deliberation „evidence based‟, expert processes, for informing social agency (emergent prescriptions restricted view of options, and unstructured as well citizen „verdicts‟ / knowledges, uncertainties as deliberately designed ) deliberative consensus interest-funded science, Sustainability single „best / optimal / excluded civil society most legitimate‟ decisions
  33. 33. Plural Roles for Diversity multivalent dynamics in POSSIBLE MULTIPLE diverse socio-technical trajectories GOVERNANCE PATHWAYS TRAJECTORIES COMMITMENTS            broad-based appraisal SOCIAL „opening up‟ with distributed innovation APPRAISAL „plural conditional‟ civil society engagement policy discourse multiple: institutions, disciplines, methods, „best path‟ depends on: issues, options, frames, contexts, perspectives, uncertainties, contexts, Sustainability places, sensitivities, scenarios, properties, perspectives equilibria, pathways, discourses
  34. 34. www.anewmanifesto.org Our vision is a world where science and technology work more directly for social justice, poverty alleviation and the environment. This requires innovation which is transformative – reshaping social and power relations to allow innovation in new directions. It means challenging the dominance of pathways driven simply by private profit and military interests. It means innovation for sustainability, paying attention to ecological integrity and diverse environmental and social values. It means that the benefits of innovation are widely and equitably shared, and not captured by narrow, powerful interests. It means encouraging open and plural forms of innovation pathway – social and technical; high tech and low tech; those which are currently hidden, as well as those which are more commonly recognised. It means organising innovation in ways that are networked, distributed and inclusive, involving diverse people and groups, including those who are poor and marginalised. It means going beyond technical elites in large international, state and commercial organisations to support and harness the energy, creativity and ingenuity of users, workers, consumers, citizens, activists, farmers and small businesses.

×