CIRCLE Seminar with Gaétan de Rassenfosse on “Technology Protectionism and the Patent System: Strategic Technologies in China”


Gaetan de Rassenfosse

Gaétan de Rassenfosse, Assistant Professor Tenure Track in Science & Technology Policy at EPFL (Lausanne, Switzerland), will give a seminar on “Technology Protectionism and the Patent System: Strategic Technologies in China”.

Date: 19/10: 15.00-16.00

Place: CIRCLE, seminar room M214

Discussant: Torben Schubert, CIRCLE

Abstract: The national treatment principle, a centerpiece of many trade-related international treaties, mandates nondiscriminatory application of treaty provisions to nationals and foreigners. In international patent law treaties, the principle prevents countries from free-riding on foreign technologies, thereby preserving incentives for global innovations. Concerns about violation of the principle at the Chinese patent office have been voiced in business and policy circles, but there is little empirical evidence backing this claim. Using data on about half a million patent applications filed in China we find no, or only weak, evidence of anti-foreign bias in the issuance of patents overall. However, foreign applications in technology fields that are of strategic importance to China are four to seven percentage points less likely to be approved than local applications, all else equal. Given the importance of industrial policy in China and the country’s strong focus on indigenous innovation and intellectual property, the empirical results provide a case of technology protectionism by means of the patent system.

CIRCLE Seminar with Markus Grillitsch on “The Entrepreneur in Innovation Systems: On the interplay between social structure and agency”


Dr. Markus Grillitsch

Markus Grillitsch, a researcher at the Department of Human Geography and CIRCLE, Lund University, will give a seminar on “The Entrepreneur in Innovation Systems: On the interplay between social structure and agency”.

Date: 05/10: 14.00-15.00

Place: CIRCLE, seminar room M214

Discussant: Magnus Nilsson, CIRCLE

Abstract: Innovation systems research has been strong in explaining how institutions shape innovation behaviour and outcome but rather weak on agency while entrepreneurship research zooms in on agency but is seeking a more systemic perspective. This paper conceptualizes entrepreneurship as specific type of agency that is essential for explaining structural change in innovation systems. It develops the argument against the backdrop of specialisation and diversification in innovation systems creating opportunities for innovation and entrepreneurship but potentially also structural barriers. Entrepreneurs connect and change structures of innovation systems and build pertinent capacities by holding multiple positions, labour mobility and networks across structures. Institutional arrangements supporting the entrepreneur in overcoming structural barriers will thus enhance the utilisation of opportunities that arise at the intersections of industries, technologies and institutions, and consequently stimulate structural change and the adaptability of economies.

CIRCLE seminar programme for autumn 2016


Date: 5th October, 14.00-15.00

Markus Grillitsch, CIRCLE & KEG Lund University

Markus Grillitsch is an associated senior lecturer at the Department of Human Geography at Lund University. His research interests are innovation, institutions, and regional development. His work is published in Industry and Innovation, Environment and Planning A, European Planning Studies.

 Date: 19th October, 14.00-15.00

Gaetàn de Rassenfosse, EPFL Lausanne.

Gaetàn de Rassenfosse is Assistant Professor in Science & Technology Policy at EPFL in Lausanne. He is an expert in patent and patent citations analysis, as well as in the mechanisms of financing innovation. His work is published in Research Policy, Strategic Entrepreneurship Journal, Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics.

 Date: 26th October, 14.00-15.00

Markus Simeth, Universidad Carlos III,  Madrid.

Markus Simeth is Assistant professor at Universidad Carlos III de Madrid. His research interests are especially focused on firms’ engagement in scientific activity, as well as the role of open innovation. His work is published in Management Science, Research Policy.

Date: 9th November, 14.00-15.00

Anders Broström, CESIS, Stockholm.

Anders is a researcher at CESIS. His research is focused on the role of universities in regional economic dynamics, the interactions with public research organizations as well as the incentive structures in science. His work is published in Research Policy, The Journal of Technology Transfer.

Date: 23th November, 14.00-15.00

Fabio Montobbio, University of Torino & KITES, Bocconi University.

Fabio is associate professor at the University of Torino. His research focuses on the role of international spillovers, as well as on the analysis of university patenting. His work is published in World Development, Research Policy, The Scandinavian Journal of Economics.

All the seminars take place at CIRCLE, in the room M213, Solvegatan 16, Lund.

Final PhD seminar with Hanna Martin on “Cleantech industry dynamics, innovation and regional context: Biomass based industries in Sweden”

Hanna Martin

Hanna Martin, PhD candidate at CIRCLE and the Department of Human Geography (KEG), will present her PhD project with the working title “Cleantech industry dynamics, innovation and regional context – biomass based industries in Sweden”. The final seminar is the last seminar before the actual PhD defence. Hanna will provide a 10-minute presentation which will be followed by the actual discussion.

Discussant: Prof. Bernhard Truffer from EAWAG, Switzerland and Utrecht University, the Netherlands.

Date: Tuesday June 7th 13.15-15
Place: Geocentrum, Sölvegatan 10, 4th floor, room ‘Malmö’

Abstract: Economic geography, innovation studies and related disciplines have during the past decade experienced an increasing interest in regional economic evolution and the question how and why regional industries emerge and grow, respectively decline, over time. The literature as it now stands however provides only limited insights regarding how a broad range of actors commonly contributes to new regional industrial path development – and especially how institutions matter, what institutions matter and at what spatial scale they matter. By addressing this gap, the dissertation aims at contributing to a more coherent conceptual framework on regional economic evolution. In particular, the regional innovation system (RIS) approach is identified as framework with potential to bring forward insights: Its strength lies in addressing innovation-based regional development by considering a broad range of innovation actors and institutions and policy; and moreover, RIS allow conceptualising regions as open, nationally and internationally connected systems. Yet as RIS possess some limitations with regard to bringing about an evolutionary perspective, the insights are complemented by the literature on socio-technical transitions. This research field targets the closely interdependent, co-evolutionary relationship between technologies and their overall economic, societal, and institutional context. Its strength lies in explaining and conceptualizing the emergence and formation of new so-called socio-technical configurations, yet with a strong notion on ecological sustainability. The dissertation empirically focusses on the endeavour of different Swedish regions to transform established, respectively build-up new, industry structures towards more environmentally friendly modes. In particular, it focusses on attempts of regional industries to increasingly replace fossil by renewable bio-based resources. The dissertation therefore also makes a contribution to better understanding the roles, possiblities and limitations of regions in the transformation towards a ’bio-economy’.

CIRCLE Seminar with Helene Ahlborg on “Towards a conceptualization of power and micro-level politics in energy transitions”

Dr. Helene Ahlborg

Dr. Helene Ahlborg

Helene Ahlborg, Post-doctoral researcher at Chalmers University of Technology, Division of Environmental Systems Analysis, will give a seminar on “Towards a conceptualization of power and micro-level politics in energy transitions”.

Date: 01/06: 14.00-15.00
Place: CIRCLE, Seminar Room

Discussant: Lea Fünfschilling, CIRCLE

Abstract: The conceptualization of political dimensions of energy transitions is still in an early stage. The article’s aim is to develop conceptual tools for studying relations of power in micro-level energy transitions, and identify how power relations become de/stabilized in such processes. Based on sociotechnical systems approaches and philosophical understandings of power, the article presents an analytical approach for studying the introduction of electricity as a politically charged process of formation of a new sociotechnical system at the local level. The approach is applied to a case of mini-hydropower electrification in Tanzania. The study explains why and how electrification processes simultaneously reinforce social inequality and enhance social mobility. It identifies material, symbolic and discursive domains that work as sources of de/stabilization of social hierarchies. These domains help explain why electrification processes unfold in certain directions, with particular consequences for actors involved, for system sustainability and for the goal of poverty alleviation.

CIRCLE SEMINAR with Daniel S. Hain on “The Development of National Innovation System Research: Towards an Interdisciplinary Framework?”

Dr. Daniel S. Hain

Dr. Daniel S. Hain

Daniel S. Hain, Assistant Professor, Ph.D., Department of Business and Management/ IKE / DRUID, Aalborg University, Denmark, will give a seminar on “The Development of National Innovation System Research: Towards an Interdisciplinary Framework”

Date: 25/05: 14.00-15.00
Place: CIRCLE, Seminar Room

Discussant: TBA

Abstract: The main idea of the paper is to map the development in the studies on National Systems of Innovation. A greater comprehensiveness in understanding and systematic operationalization of the NIS concept has a potential to contribute to the development of comparative studies of different NISs. The first aim of the paper is to come to a more comprehensive understanding of the initial versions of the NIS analytical framework as introduced in the three NIS books, that shaped the development of the field. The second aim of the paper is to provide an insight into its developments over time, in terms of whether (or not) it has over time led to a more comprehensive understanding, and a coherent framework suitable for conducting a systematic analysis of NIS. Therefore, we analyze the development of work within – and relationship between – dominant analytical focuses. We explain this by the underlying academic community structure, and trends in the research themes. In order to map the structure and development within the branch of NSI research, we first carry out a bibliometric analysis. Our main aim here is to identify existing and emerging academic community structures within the NIS literature, as revealed in by a network-analysis of co-citation pattern. Our assumption is that the way articles and other contributions refer to each other’s carries information on their conceptual relatedness. Further, we deploy methods from natural language processing, namely LDA topic modeling, to add in an unrestricted and data-driven way a qualitative layer of information on the context and themes of work within the literature and its communities. Finally, we manually categorized the most relevant publications in this branch of literature according to its conceptual and analytical focus.

Olof Ejermo presenting “The PARIS dataset on publication of academic researchers in Sweden”

Dr. Olof Ejermo

Dr. Olof Ejermo

Olof Ejermo, Associate Professor at CIRCLE, will present the new CIRCLE dataset of academic publications PARIS (Publications of Academic Researchers in Sweden). Olof will explain this new and comprehensive source of data and will provide some hints on possible uses by researchers at CIRCLE.

Discussant: Torben Schubert, CIRCLE

Date: 11/05: 14.00-15.00
Place: CIRCLE, Seminar Room