The IPL newsletter: Volume 19, Issue 396


The University of Manchester and University of Toronto Contribute Matching Funds to Support Collaborative Research Initiatives on Cities

University of Toronto School of Cities
Professor, Tenley Conway, Department of Geography, University of Toronto Mississauga and Ian Mell, Senior Lecturer in Environmental & Landscape Planning, Manchester Urban Institute, will lead the project ‘Co-producing sustainable cities through Green Infrastructure best practice’. They will use the funding to facilitate reflections in both locations and provide opportunities for research exchange and teaching between staff, students and local practitioners. Assistant Professor of Political Science Theresa Enright and Professor Human Geography Kevin Ward, Manchester Urban Institute, will lead the project ‘Governing urban infrastructures’ will look at how infrastructure is governed and how it supports sustainable spatial development has preoccupied those working at the interface of infrastructure and urban studies. The use of infrastructure to project cities into the world economy and to position them to capture global capital flows has accompanied a number of experiments in territorial governance. At the same time, city-regions have sought out new multi-scalar infrastructure arrangements to provide the necessary welfare support and services for their citizens. Often, the contest between these economic, environmental and social aims causes conflicts between different urban stakeholders. Infrastructure is thus increasingly at the centre of debates over the making of urban futures.

Editor's Pick

Globalization in Transition: The Future of Trade and Value Chains

Susan Lund et al., McKinsey Global Institute
Even with trade tensions and tariffs dominating the headlines, important structural changes in the nature of globalization have gone largely unnoticed. In this report, the McKinsey Global Institute analyzes the dynamics of global value chains and finds structural shifts that have been hiding in plain sight. Globalization is in the midst of a transformation. Yet the public debate about trade is often about recapturing the past rather than looking toward the future. The mix of countries, companies, and workers that stand to gain in the next era is changing. Understanding how the landscape is shifting will help policymakers and business leaders prepare for globalization’s next chapter and the opportunities and challenges it will present.

Innovation Policy

Towards a Reskilling Revolution: Industry-Led Action for the Future of Work

World Economic Forum
As the Fourth Industrial Revolution impacts skills, tasks, and jobs, there is growing concern that both job displacement and talent shortages will impact business dynamism and societal cohesion. A proactive and strategic effort is needed on the part of all relevant stakeholders to manage reskilling and upskilling to mitigate both job losses and talent shortages. Through the Preparing for the Future of Work project, the World Economic Forum provides a platform for designing and implementing intra-industry collaboration on the future of work, working closely with the public sector, unions and educators. The output of the project’s first phase of work, Towards a Reskilling Revolution: A Future of Jobs for All, highlighted an innovative method to identify viable and desirable job transition pathways for disrupted workers. This second report, Towards a Reskilling Revolution: Industry-Led Action for the Future of Work extends our previous research to assess the business case for reskilling and establish its magnitude for different stakeholders. It also outlines a roadmap for selected industries to address specific challenges and opportunities related to the transformation of their workforce.

Navigating a World of Disruption

Jacques Bughin and Jonathan Woetzel, McKinsey Global Institute
We live in an era of disruption in which powerful global forces are changing how we live and work. The rise of China, India, and other emerging economies; the rapid spread of digital technologies; the growing challenges to globalization; and, in some countries, the splintering of long-held social contracts are all roiling business, the economy, and society. These and other global trends offer considerable new opportunities to companies, sectors, countries, and individuals that embrace them successfully—but the downside for those who cannot keep up has also grown disproportionately. For business leaders, policy makers, and individuals, figuring out how to navigate these skewed times may require some radical rethinking. This briefing note for the 2019 World Economic Forum in Davos draws on recent research by the McKinsey Global Institute (MGI). It focuses on both the value-creating opportunities and the intensely competitive and societal challenges we all face in this era of technological ferment

America at Work: A National Mosaic and a Roadmap for Tomorrow

This report examines resiliency, or the capacity to respond to change—in this case, automation. This report results from the first effort to understand the more than 3,000 counties in the United States. Our goal is to help communities plan for their individual situations and develop responses that will position them to survive and thrive in a changing economy. Effective responses will require an integrated approach and cooperation across a range of stakeholders.

Cities, Clusters & Regions

Collaborating to Compete: Clusters in Action

TCI Network
This report summarizes the three days of the 21st TCI Network Global Conference (TCI 2018) in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, hosted by the Institute for Competitiveness & Prosperity, a Toronto-based think tank that focuses on raising the competitiveness and prosperity of the province of Ontario.

Statistics and Indicators

2018 State of the Silicon Prairie Report

Silicon Prairie News
This report looks at more than 30 metro regions across 11 Midwestern states, providing context on their entrepreneurial ecosystems, grades across seven metrics, and offering recommendations. One of the key takeaways from this report is that Silicon Prairie Communities should be thinking about where they should be on various metrics in this index and not just where others are.

Policy Digest

Building a Nation of Innovators

Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada
Canadians are at the core of innovation whose ideas and inspirations will guide the future success of our economy. Countries around the world are making large investments to unlock the benefits of technological transformation for their economies and peoples. In order for Canadians to reap the same benefits, we require a new approach that builds on our strong fundamentals, such as sound public finances, a low inflation environment, and the lowest unemployment rates in a generation.

Innovation is the key to competitiveness, productivity, economic growth, creating good jobs, and overall making life better for all Canadians. To become one of the most innovative countries in the world, Canada must build a culture of innovation, where Canadians can embrace change and have the right skill sets and tools to leverage emerging opportunities to compete in the global economy.

The multi-year Innovation and Skills Plan is Canada’s response to this new reality, redefining the innovation ecosystem. The Plan builds on Canada’s innovation strengths and addresses areas of weakness along the innovation continuum: from people and skills, through to fundamental and applied research, building innovation ecosystems, commercializing ideas and starting-up companies, to exporting and scaling-up globally competitive companies across all sectors of the economy. At its very core, the Innovation and Skills Plan builds around Canada’s competitive advantage: its people.

A New Approach to Innovation Policy in Canada
The Innovation and Skills Plan is a major redesign of the innovation policy landscape in Canada. It is a new approach to drive growth and create good jobs — one that aims to succeed by building a culture of innovation and a globally recognized brand for Canada as one of the most innovative and competitive countries in the world.

The Plan’s integrated, integrated approach supports firms at all points along the innovation continuum and Canadians at every stage of their lives. Emphasizing partnerships, the plan brings together stakeholders from across the innovation system. It embraces inclusivity and fosters the participation of traditionally underrepresented groups in the innovation economy. It strengthens Canadian leadership in key sectors by removing barriers to growth and fostering innovation in potential high-growth areas.

Targeting challenges and opportunities at every stage of the innovation continuum, the Innovation and Skills Plan is firmly rooted in four interconnected and mutually reinforcing pillars.

Four pillars

People and skills
Ensuring businesses have the right pipeline of talent to succeed and equipping Canadians with the tools, skills, and experience they need to succeed throughout their lifetimes.

What’s new?

  • Supports Canadians at every stage of their lives.
  • Takes a partnership-driven approach, working with industry, post-secondary institutions, not-for-profits, and provinces and territories.

Building ecosystems: science and technology superclusters
Building innovation ecosystems through new partnerships, bridging the gap from idea to commercialization to growing globally-minded firms.

What’s new?

  • Takes an experimental, transformational approach that aims to build superclusters — world-class, large-scale innovation ecosystems — to strengthen Canadian competitiveness.
  • Places a stronger emphasis on science and evidence-based decision-making through investments in fundamental research and a new focus on multidisciplinary, international research.
  • Helps Canadian businesses better understand IP so that they can unlock their benefits and scale-up their innovations.

Investment, scale-up, and growing companies
Attracting investment, supporting the growth of leading Canadian companies and start-ups, and exporting.

What’s new?

  • Provides both direct and indirect support for firms.
  • Uses the Government as a first customer to support innovative SMEs.
  • Provides an integrated approach to support firms at all stages of growth.
  • Makes advice and capital available to firms looking to go global and export.

Program simplification and reorganization
Offering a timely, client-centric single window in the delivery of business innovation programs in every region.

What’s new?

  • Provides a single window for firms to access tailored support, with special access for clean technology firms.
  • Reduces the number of programs by two-thirds and increases overall funding.
  • Offers a simplified suite of programs, featuring four flagship programs that correspond to different firm growth stages.
  • Addresses challenges and identifies opportunities through six business-led Economic Strategy Tables that focus on areas of high-growth potential.

Moving Forward
While the Innovation and Skills Plan has taken major steps and made significant progress, work must be done to maintain Canada’s competitiveness, strengthen regional ecosystems, and reinforce leadership in areas of high-growth. Technology is not only accelerating changes in the workplace, but also increasing the integration and convergence of industry sectors. New technologies, such as AI, are transforming existing industries and creating new business models. They are offering new sources of growth, while presenting new challenges related to the issues of trust and privacy. These opportunities raise the risk of creating new digital divides without strong connectivity for all Canadians. The insights shared by Canadians in the Digital and Data Consultations will help guide the Plan going forward.

In addition, the Government is developing new regional growth strategies to support clean growth, inclusiveness, the scaling-up of Canadian firms, and innovators in every part of the country.

The Innovation and Skills Plan is a long-term plan for Canada’s future which puts people at its centre. It builds a solid foundation for success and global competitiveness. With strong business leadership, enabled by strategic government support, the removal of barriers to success will continue, investments will be made, experimentation will flourish, and strong partnerships will bolster and reinforce Canada’s important role on the world stage. Through continued determination and support across the innovation continuum, Canadians are embracing a new culture of innovation that champions ingenuity and embraces change and disruption — propelling Canada to become one of the most innovative countries in the world. Together, we will create good jobs for today and for future generations in tomorrow’s digital economy.


Changing the Tone of the Debate: Productivity Insights Network Conference 2019

Sheffield, England, 13 March, 2019
Raising productivity is a central economic challenge in the UK. The Productivity Insights Network (PIN) conference will bring together researchers, policymakers, intermediaries and businesses working to identify, advance and implement new insights to address the productivity puzzle in the UK. Join us for an engaging day of talks and panel discussions.

Workshop Series on Migration, Globalization and the Knowledge Economy

Utrecht, Netherlands, 16-17 May, 2019
The workshop will consist of a 2-day plenary session with presentations and discussions, and two keynote speakers. The keynote speakers of the Utrecht workshop will be Ina Ganguli, from University of Massachusetts, and Ufuk Akcigit, from the University of Chicago. We aim to attract both senior and junior scholars dealing with research topics such as the role of high-skilled migration in fostering innovation in receiving countries, the relationship between diversity and innovation, the role of skilled diasporas and return migrants in diffusing knowledge back to their home countries, the emerging role of MNC in shaping scientists’ and engineers’ migration flows as well as temporary migration and knowledge sharing, migration and innovation-based start-ups formation, regions and mobility, and so forth.

8th ZEW/MaCCI Conference on the Economics of Innovation and Patenting

Manheim, Germany, 16-17 May, 2019
The conference aims to stimulate discussion between international researchers conducting related empirical and theoretical analysis. In addition to keynote lectures by Professor Dietmar Harhoff and Professor Timothy Simcoe as well as parallel sessions, there will also be an invited session on innovative public procurement with Professor Dirk Czarnitzki and Professor Giancarlo Spagnolo. Theoretical and empirical contributions from all areas of the economics of innovation and patenting are welcome. Interested researchers are invited to submit a paper or an extended abstract (min. 3 pages) in PDF format to no later than 15 February 2019.


Bordeaux, France, 20-21 May, 2019
We aim to attract contributions from both junior and senior scholars; a minimum number of slots are reserved for junior researchers (PhD students or postdoc scholars who obtained their PhD in 2016 or later). Up to 18 papers will be selected from open submissions on the basis of peer review. Contributions are invited on (but not limited to) one or more of the following topics:

  • The evaluation of science policy
  • Organising research activities in universities, PROs and private R&D labs
  • Spillovers from scientific research
  • Role of gender and family in scientific research
  • Science research networks and collaboration
  • Scientific careers and mobility

Deadline for the submission of papers or extended abstracts (min 3 pages) is January 31st 2019. Submissions should be previously unpublished works. All submissions are reviewed with respect to novelty, academic quality and relevance.

CFP: A Great Transformation? Workshop on the Impact of Automation and Artificial Intelligence on Regional Economies

Torino, Italy, 27-28 May, 2019
RENIR and Despina are pleased to announce the RENIR Workshop on the impact of automation and artificial intelligence on regional economies, sponsored by Collegio Carlo Alberto and the University of Turin.We aim to attract contributions from both junior and senior scholars. Up to 18 papers will be selected from open submissions on the basis of peer review.

CFP: 2019 University-Industry Interaction Conference

Helsinki, Finland, 18-20 June, 2019
This key event for university leaders, practitioners from both business and university, policymakers and educators attracts more than 500 participants from over 60 countries to interact, share knowledge and establish new relationships. During this three-day event, you will encounter presentations from over 100 organisations, tour innovation spaces, have access to a wide variety of workshops and participate in numerous networking opportunities to gain new insights into the bigger picture of university-industry interaction.


Copenhagen, Denmark, 19-21 June, 2019
Since 1996, DRUID has become one of the world’s premier academic conferences on innovation and the dynamics of structural, institutional and geographic change. DRUID is proud to invite senior and junior scholars to participate and contribute with a paper to DRUID19, hosted by Copenhagen Business School. Presenting distinguished plenary speakers, a range of parallel paper sessions, and an attractive social program, the conference aims at mapping theoretical, empirical and methodological advances, contributing novel insights, and help identifying scholarly positions, divisions, and common grounds in current scientific controversies within the field. Keynotes delivered by top scholars from innovation studies, management, economic geography, and numerous other research fields. Plenary speakers at DRUID19 include Stefano Brusoni, Dimo Dimov, Nijanlana Dutt, Annabel Gawer, Martine Haas, Adam B. Jaffe, Michael G. Jacobides, Sarah Kaplan and Dan Levinthal.

The 2019 Technology Transfer Society Annual Conference

Toronto, 26-28 September, 2019
The Munk School of Global Affairs and Public Policy and the Technology Transfer Society would like to invite you to submit a paper* to the 2019 Technology Transfer Conference. The main themes of the Conference will revolve around technology transfer and innovation policy, technology commercialization and entrepreneurship (with a focus on universities), and inclusive innovation. Submissions featuring longitudinal and historical studies, ideally using mixed-methods research are particularly encouraged. Submissions based on other methods are also welcome. For more information on how to submit an abstract, visit the Call for Papers page.

Atlanta Conference on Science and Innovation Policy

Atlanta, GA, 14-17 October, 2019
The Atlanta Conference on Science and Innovation Policy provides a showcase for the highest quality scholarship addressing the multidimensional challenges and interrelated characteristics of science and innovation policy and processes.

Regional Innovation Policies 2019: Technological Chance, Social Innovation, and Regional Transformation

Florence, Italy, 7-8 November, 2019
The Conference will focus on the paths of regional transformation that emerge as a response to technological and social change. Sustainability issues require regions to face change by trying to balance economic growth with social innovation. We will discuss the role that regional policies can play within such scenarios, by supporting the creation of new assets and resources, as well as favouring multi-level alignments of visions and interests.

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This newsletter is prepared by Jen Nelles.
Project manager is David A. Wolfe