The IPL newsletter: Volume 7, Issue 127

News from the IPL


This newsletter is published by The Innovation Policy Lab at the Munk School of Global Affairs, University of Toronto, and sponsored by the Ministry of Research and Innovation. The views and ideas expressed in this newsletter do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of the Ontario Government.



More Space At World-Class Research Hub To Create More Opportunities For Innovation, Jobs And Prosperity

he Ontario government is helping to expand the MaRS Discovery District, a world-class centre for research and innovation in Toronto, Premier Dalton McGuinty announced recently. The Premier announced over $16 million in new funding for the second phase of the MaRS Centre at an investment dinner at BIO 2006, an international life sciences conference. MaRS houses science and technology research labs alongside technology companies and investment capital firms. To date, the government has invested $66.7 million in MaRS to help support the discovery, funding and marketing of new ideas all in the same building. Work on the next phase of the MaRS Centre is expected to begin this year. The government’s investment will help to more than double the centre’s capacity from 700,000 square feet to more than 1.5 million square feet.

Partnership to Strengthen Ontario Biotech Sector

The governments of the Province of Ontario and the State of Illinois today signed a five-year agreement to collaborate on biotechnology research and trade. Ontario Economic Development and Trade Minister Joseph Cordiano and Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity Jack Lavin signed the Memorandum of Understanding and Cooperation at the BIO 2006 Conference in Chicago. The Ontario-Illinois MOU covers: Developing bio-products networks to capitalize on trends and opportunities of interest to both jurisdictions; Fostering information and technology exchanges across business and research institutions that will advance research and commercialization of biomaterials, bio-fuels, agricultural sciences, plant and animal genomics, environmental sustainability, food science and nutrition; Supporting trade development and business partnership opportunities, including such activities as business and/or scientific delegations; and Identifying specific issues the province and/or state may bring to the attention of their federal governments.

IBM Opens Life Sciences Discovery Centre

Toronto’s University Health Network (UHN) and IBM Canada Ltd. (Toronto, ON) have teamed up to create the Life Sciences Discovery Centre — a research centre focused on drug discovery in the areas of ovarian, lung, colon and prostate cancer. Located at the MaRS Centre (Toronto, ON), the Life Sciences Discovery Centre will use an IBM eServer p595 supercomputer, along with additional IMB software, to analyze protein interactions. The partnership was facilitated through IBM’s Shared University Grant program, which also allows UHN researchers to collaborate with computational biologists from the T.J. Watson Research Lab(New York, NY).



Editor's Pick


Growing the Nation’s Biotech Sector: State Bioscience Initiatives

Biotech Industry Organization, BIO

This 2006 report presents updated data, examines growth trends, and identifies metropolitan areas with the largest and most concentrated employment in each of the bioscience subsectors identified in the 2004 report. These include agricultural feedstock and chemicals; drugs and pharmaceuticals; medical devices and equipment; and research, testing and medical laboratories. This report also identifies current key trends in state and regional initiatives to support the biosciences.

Innovation Policy


Profitablility of Venture Capital Investment in Europe and the United States

European Commission

This paper examines the profitability of venture capital investment in Europe and the United States. It highlights the unfavourable profitability differential of European venture capital investment in comparison with the United States. The investment performance measures used are the internal rate of return (IRR) and investment multiples. The analysis covers aggregated industry returns and venture capital funds’ returns aggregated by vintage year. It relies on the VentureXpert private equity and venture capital performance database, maintained by Thomson Venture Economics. It also considers developments in the private equity and venture capital markets in Europe and the United States.

The Productivity of UK Universities

Gustavo Grespi and Aldo Geuna, SPRU

The scientific process produces several research outputs that can be classified into three broadly defined categories: (1) new knowledge, (2) highly qualified human resources, and (3) new technologies. This paper looks specifically at the determinants of the first two types of research output, which are the most closely related to the science research budget. It focuses generally on the determinants of university research output (as measured by publications, citations and numbers of graduate students) in the UK. It uses an original dataset that includes information for the 52 ‘old’ UK universities across 29 scientific fields for a period of 18 years.

University Research, Intellectual Property Rights and European Innovation Systems

Bart Verspagen, ECIS

This paper surveys the literature on university patenting. From the point of view of the economic theory of patents. It is argued that patenting knowledge developed by university researchers is paradoxical: patents are normally intended to stimulate knowledge development by providing property rights, but universities also operate under a different incentive scheme, i.e., they receive public funds to discover socially useful knowledge. In the debate surrounding the so-called Bayh-Dole Act in the United States, it has, however, been argued that patents on university inventions may be necessary to stimulate technology transfer from universities to private firms. The first part of the paper addresses two major questions. First, what is the economic logic of Bayh-Dole, and, second, what were the effects on universities and the knowledge they develop. In the second part, the paper addresses the issue of whether “Bayh-Dole-like” legislation would be beneficial for European countries. In a number of European countries, a suggestion has been made that this could enhance knowledge transfer from the public to the private sector. Using a new database resulting from a survey among patent inventors in six European countries, an assessment is given of the degree of university patenting in Europe.



Cities, Clusters & Regions

Innovation Newfoundland and Labrador: A Blueprint for Prosperity

Ministry of Innovation, Trade and Rural Development

Newfoundland and Labrador’s Innovation Strategy is a plan to increase its capacity for innovation in order to compete more successfully in the changing global marketplace, and grow and prosper as an economy and a society. This Strategy: identifies specific initiatives in key areas that will stimulate, support and capitalize on innovation; establishes goals and objectives to support these strategies; and formulates actions to achieve these goals. In doing so, it also builds on the many existing initiatives that are essential to support and complement the Strategy, and places them within government’s overall innovation agenda.

The Role of Regional Institutional Entrepreneurs in the Emergence of Clusters in Nanotechnology

V. Mangematin et al.

In the case of new technologies like nanotechnology, institutional entrepreneurs have to act at different levels (organizational, regional, national) at the same time. This paper reconstructs, in some detail, the history of two cases, in Grenoble and in Twente/Netherlands. An intriguing finding is that institutional entrepreneurs build their environment before changing their institution. They first mobilize European support to convince local and national levels before actual cluster building occurs. Only later will there be reactions against any de-institutionalisation caused at the base location. The Dutch case shows another notable finding: when mobilizing support the entrepreneur will have to agree to further conditions, and then ends up in a different situation (a broad national consortium) than originally envisaged (the final cluster involved a collaboration of Twente with two other centres). In general, an institutional entrepreneur attempts to create momentum, and when this is achieved, he has to follow rather than lead it.


Statistics & Indicators


Innovation Clusters in the European Regions

Centre for North South Economic Research

This paper investigates on the presence of innovation clusters in the European regions. The analysis is based on a databank set up by CRENoS on regional patenting at the European Patent Office classified by ISIC sectors (2 digit), which considers 175 regions of 17 countries in Europe. It includes an analysis of the spatial distribution of innovation activities in Europe. Some global and local indicators for spatial association are presented, indicating the presence of a general dependence process in the distribution of the phenomena under examination. The analysis is implemented for 23 manufacturing sectors to assess the presence of significant differences in their spatial features. Moreover, the extent and strength of spatial externalities are evaluated for two periods: 1994-96 and 1999-01. Secondly, this paper contributes to the analysis of the process of spatial agglomeration of innovative activities by directly investigating its determinants. The main purpose is to identify the extent to which the degree of specialization or diversity in a region may affect the innovative activities in a particular local industry. Other local factors are also tested such as home market effect and other agglomeration phenomena. The geographical extent of such effects is measured by means of the usual tests of spatial econometrics.


Index of Silicon Valley 2006

Joint Ventures Silicon Valley

This annual report finds that in 2005, Silicon Valley experienced its first net increase in jobs in four years, coupled with the largest population gain and sustained increase in per capita income since 2000. This follows a turbulent five-year period of economic restructuring and occupational change that produced both unprecedented job losses and substantial wage gains. This year’s Special Analysis describes growing evidence of new idea creation (in the form of patents) and business creation (in the form of thousands of new start-up firms, and a large share of U.S. venture capital investment). The region’s Creative and Innovation Services cluster has the most firms of any cluster, and now ranks second in employment—the only cluster to experience a net gain in jobs between 2001 and 2005.

Policy Digest

A Review of Rural and Regional Development Policies and Programs

Mark Goldenberg, CPRN
Federal and provincial governments in Canada and their counterparts in other jurisdictions have struggled with the challenge of reversing rural depopulation and strengthening rural and regional development. Responses have varied and had varying degrees of success. Four approaches have marked government policy and program activity: using primarily economic instruments; innovation and technology development; community economic development and the social economy; and, community development and capacity building. This document describes innovative approaches in polices and programs for rural and regional development from 13 jurisdictions in Canada, Europe and the United States.

The research suggests that public policy approaches in this area fall into several broad categories:
° “traditional” approaches, using primarily economic instruments;
° innovation and technology development;
° community economic development and the social economy; and,
° community development and capacity building.

New Governance Models
Cutting across many of these different approaches to rural and regional development are new governance models that are increasingly being adopted by governments. Key themes of these new governance models are: partnerships among governments, the private sector, communities, voluntary organizations and others; greater devolution to the regional and local level; new roles for the state as an “enabler” and “convenor”; and the sharing of power and authority with the community itself.

Innovative Policies and Policy Instruments to Promote Rural and Regional Development
CPRN examined a large number and wide variety of policies and policy instruments to promote rural and regional development, which are described in the appendix to this research report. The report also highlights a number of policies and policy instruments that appeared to be particularly innovative and that illustrate different types of policy approaches. These include:

° Ontario’s Rural Economic Development (RED) Program;
° Quebec’s ACCORD program to support the development of regional niches of innovation and excellence; Quebec’s financial support for community development corporations and for community and volunteer action;
° The Resilient Communities project in British Columbia;
° The European Union’s LEADER+ approach to the development, implementation and delivery of rural development policies and strategies;
° The United Kingdom’s Community Empowerment Action Plan and its Local Strategic Partnerships to strengthen communities through “place-based” local governance and “joinedup” public services;
° Scotland’s Investing in Communities Fund and One-Stop Service Shops;
° Finland’s Rural Policy and Village Action programs;
° the Norwegian system of land and resources ownership, which gives municipalities significant income from renewable energy development; and
° the United States Rural Community Empowerment, Rural Champion Communities, and Rural Economic Area Partnership Zones programs; Oregon’s Regional Investment Funds; Alaska’s Community Development Block Grants; and Wisconsin’s Community Facilities Direct Loans and Grants program.

Lessons Learned from Canadian and International Experience
CPRN’s review of recent research literature on rural and regional development, and its examination of policies and instruments in Canada and other countries, suggest a number of key lessons:

° Traditional approaches and instruments such as regional development programs and support for economic development, job creation and enterprise development, are insufficient for meeting the challenges of regional, rural and community development today;
° Rather, these must be combined with more holistic community- and place-based approaches and initiatives that involve the local community and citizens and that help create and build on local assets and resources, while bringing other resources to bear;
° In this context, strategic investments – in people, communities, local asset building, and technology – can make a difference;
° A range of policy instruments and measures will need to be brought into play, including financial assistance for developmental projects; seed monies; support for innovation and technology; support for community development and capacity building; resources for consultation, planning and community empowerment and involvement; and expert and technical assistance;
° Effective partnerships – involving government, business, labour, educational institutions and others – are essential;
° Strategic planning, involving the local community and citizens, and full and active consultation, are critical;
° Governance matters. Effective governance – including consultation mechanisms, planning, networking, delivery systems, and monitoring, accountability and evaluation – must involve the local community, citizens, the private and non-profit sectors, government, education, and others.

Rural and regional development policies are continuing to evolve to reflect changing economic, social and demographic realities.
Governments in Canada and in other countries have introduced a wide variety of innovative policy instruments in this area in recent years. Some of these may well be of interest to Ontario in considering how best to address the province’s current and future challenges.

It is hoped that the overview of policies and policy instruments presented in this research report will be helpful in encouraging public discussion about these issues. Further analytical work in this area could include more detailed examination of the
characteristics and success factors associated with the different policy approaches, as well as key issues and challenges in their implementation, and more in-depth analysis of specific initiatives and innovations in different jurisdictions.



ICT Toronto

Toronto, 19 April, 2006

Please come and celebrate with ICT industry leaders, the public release of a Strategy that will place the Toronto region amongst the 5 top locations in the world for ICT research, education, business and investment by 2011.

Digital Regions – Public Private Strategies for IT Cluster Development Technopolicy Seminar

Austin, Texas, 1-2 May, 2006

Many regions focus on information technology as a key sector in their economic development strategies. This seminar will present informative case examples, from Asia, Europe and the Americas, of successful and challenged public-private strategies for cluster development in the Global Knowledge Economy. Special attention will be paid to the impressive growth model of the Austin IT-Cluster and Austin’s strategies for sustaining this in the future. Other topics that will be covered include the globalised economy and its meaning for IT-Clusters and the question of how to integrate an IT-Cluster with other economic sectors.


EURADA – Second World Forum on Regional Economic Development

Madeira, Portugal, 15-17 May, 2006

In a global economy based on knowledge, regions can develop competitive advantages by relying on talent, entrepreneurship and innovation. Both in Europe and elsewhere in the world, regions implement strategies and measures aiming at : creating and attracting talent; supporting the creation and development of new enterprises: facilitating their access to support services and sources of finance; promoting the emergence of knowledge-based regions through the exploitation of research results and the setting up of key actors networks. The Second World Forum on Regional Economic Development is a unique opportunity for you to exchange ideas and best practice with experts and practitioners in local and regional development from countries and regions all over the world. Conference attendees also have the opportunity to register for the DIME training day on “Policy Platforms: The New Approach to Regional Innovation Strategies” announced seperately below.


Socio-Economic Conference

Ottawa, 16 – 17 May, 2006

The Statistics Canada Socio-economic Conference provides an annual forum for empirical research focusing on issues of concern to Canadian public policy. The conference focuses on studies discussing: emerging economic trends and their underlying causes;
and the social implications of economic trends and the ability of various groups to participate in the economy. Topics relevant to the Conference include, but are not restricted to, innovation; productivity; international trade; agriculture; environment-economy linkages; natural resources and energy; transportation; industrial development; urban and rural development; health; education; families; income and wealth and their distribution; and labour markets. The Conference focuses on studies directly relevant to Canada, while at the same time welcoming comparative international studies that shed light on Canadian public policy issues. It places a premium on empirical studies making innovative use of Canadian data.


DIME Training Day: Regional Innovation Strategies: Constructing Advantage through Platform Policies

Madeira, Portugal, 17 May, 2006

It has become clear that there are three overwhelming areas of demand for training on the part of policy-makers with economic, innovation and regional development responsibilities . In broad terms, these are the following, in descending order of urgency: Regional Innovation Systems and Local Industry Clusters, Knowledge Economies, and Globalisation of Science, Technology & R&D. Put in simple language, policy makers are interested in understanding and becoming Technological Top Regions (TTRs) or ‘Hot Spots’ Accordingly, and in line also with EU DG Research’s recent commissioning of DIME and PRIME (a separate FP 6 NoE) advice on the construction of regional advantage (CRA) the program aims to assist policy makers to evolve policy mechanisms to facilitate the achievement of these regional aspirations.

Conference background

Draft Program


Atlanta Conference on S&T Policy

Atlanta, 18-20 May, 2006

Both the U.S. and Europe see innovation as central to the future growth and vitality of their economies. Policies to encourage innovation need to lead in institutional learning and change across sectors. This conference explores the research base that informs those policies, in current international context. It aims to stimulate dialog among policy makers, analysts, and scholars, covering both what we know and what we need to know to frame effective science and technology policies and to help advance the research agenda of the field. Proposals for papers and sessions are due February 1.


International Conference on Transnational Technology Transfer

Darmstadt, Germany, 30-31 May, 2006

Innovation and technological change are the main drivers of economic growth and the key to competitiveness both on national and international level. Successful innovation depends considerably on the ability to efficiently exploit and commercialize knowledge. This is achieved today with growing transnational transfer and exchange of knowledge and technologies. However, there is still a lot that needs to be learned. This conference focuses on successful models of international knowledge transfer and networked innovation activities.

2006 Ontario R&E Summit

Toronto, 5-6 June, 2006

The 2006 Ontario R&E Summit being hosted by ORION and MaRS and being held in the new MaRS Discovery District Collaboration Centre. This event is promoted as “Ontario’s definitive annual gathering for the research and education community, inspiring innovation through collaboration technologies and expertise”. MaRS is a non-profit corporation aimed at improving commercial outcomes from Canada’s foundation of science and technology innovation. The Collaboration Centre, opened last May, is a “convergence innovation centre” located in Toronto’s refurbished and hip Discovery District.

Changing Foresight Practices in Regional Development: Global Pressures and Regional Possibilities

Turku, Finland, 7-9 June, 2006

The future of regions is dependent on proactive interaction between companies, universities and public actors. The aim of the conference is to discuss the different strategic possibilities of regions under the rapidly changing pressures of globalizing world. The key questions are: How regional actors can cope in a global economy? What are the new ways to study and explore the future of regions? How to enhance regional co-operation and networking? What are the strategic keys to prosperous regional futures? Does creativity strengthen regions? How general foresight and development theories can strengthen regional development in practice? How companies can shape their regional strategies in globalizing economy? The conference will consist of several keynote addresses and parallel sessions.

Networks for Innovation

Athens, Greece, 11-14 June, 2006

The 2006 International Society for Professional Innovation Management (ISPIM) Conference will be held in Athens this summer. Many topics will be discussed such as: academic-industry networks for innovation, learning and the entrepreneurial mindset, managing knowledge, SMEs: opportunities & threats, public policy to stimulate networks. Deadline for submitting an abstract: January 27, 2006.


9th Uddevalla Symposium 2006: Entrepreneurship and Development – Local Processes and Global Patterns

Fairfax, Virginia, 15-17 June, 2006

The conference organizing committee will be accepting abstracts until the 28th of February, 2006. Keep checking the conference website for more news and information.

International Conference on Technology Policy and Innovation: Science, Society and Sustainability

Santorini, Greece, 18-21 June, 2006

The choice of the ICTPI Greece 2006 theme, “Science, Society and Sustainability” was based on the outcomes of the recent national Technology Foresight (TF) exercise (Greece 2001-2021), emphasizing these three key factors and their interactions as critical for the emergence of a knowledge-based economy and society. Scholars interested in presenting at this conference should submit a paper for consideration before March 15, 2006.

Innovation, Competition and Growth: Shumpeterian Perspectives

Sophia-Antipolis, 22-24 June, 2006

Recent developments in economics have gone from the recognition of the importance of innovation (early studies of innovation, exogenous growth models) to the exploration of innovation mechanisms (more refined microeconomic and sectoral studies of innovation) to the incorporation into economic models of the results of the previous research (endogenous growth, evolutionary models). An important lesson to be drawn from all this research is that a purely macro-based analysis of growth is not enough. The ISS 2006 conference aims at favouring dialogue amongst open minded researchers sharing a common interest in innovation and in the work of Schumpeter. The following subjects provide examples of topics about which the dialogue could be especially fruitful. The growing importance of knowledge and of human capital, increasing returns and path dependence, the role of variety in economic growth, the role of time and importance of business history, the co-evolution of technology and institutions, the economics of agglomeration are just some examples of subjects that will be discussed at this years event.


The Business of Innovation

Saskatoon, 8-10 August, 2006

The World Association of Industrial and Technological Research Organizations Biennial Congress – WAITRO 2006 – is an opportunity for the research and technology community worldwide to come together to learn from each other and from invited experts. WAITRO participants include potential collaborators from research and technology organizations in other parts of the world to develop projects of common interest. Representatives of International Finance Institutions and International Development Agencies will be present to assist in formulating projects that address the needs of the developing world.

The Future of Science Technology and Innovation Policy

Sussex, 11-13 September, 2006

This conference, besides celebrating the 40th Anniversary of SPRU (Science and Technology Policy Research), offers the opportunity to engage in a critical evaluation of the present and future research agenda of the Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) field. This conference seeks to explore empirical, theoretical and applied policy approaches that can enable us to conceptualize the contradictory nature of modern science and technology and innovation, and thus provide practical policy guidance. Such a conference is particularly timely because many of the existing conceptual frameworks are apparently undergoing a period of what Kuhn called ‘normal science’ where their assumptions are rarely questioned, and where they are institutionally and academically isolated from criticism. We aim to identify fruitful new ways forward in the field of STI policy by subjecting these established frameworks to structured debate and critical evaluation. The conference will be organized in the form of plenary sessions, parallel sessions and set debates. It will cover a series of broad themes. These include: Ownership, Accountability and Relevance of Science – for example, the deficiencies of peer review, the pros and cons of patenting in universities, the shifting boundary between public and private knowledge, and processes for allocating resources between disciplines. Technology, Security and Sustainability – for example, the dual relationship between technology and security, changing environment and energy policy, the balance between sustainability and growth, and the role of technology in sustainable development. Dynamics of Innovation Interfaces – for example, the management and dynamics of innovation across different levels (such as individuals, groups, firms, sectors, networks and systems), user-centred innovation processes vs. producer-centered innovation processes, and the connection between innovation and entrepreneurship.


Blue Sky II: What Indicators for Science, Technology and Innovation Policies in the 21st Century?

Ottawa, 25-27 September, 2006

This forum will examine new areas for indicator development and set a broad agenda for future work on science, technology and innovation (STI) indicators. Emphasis will be placed on indicators of outcomes and impacts in order to support monitoring, benchmarking, foresight activity, and evaluation, applied to policies and programs, and their economic and social impacts. The Forum is expected to provide ideas and guidance for indicators work in both OECD and non OECD countries, as well as in their international organizations. The Forum will include plenary sessions featuring invited guest speakers who are leading authorities in their fields. Break-out sessions will discuss papers on specific themes selected through a call for papers.

New Generation Innovation: New Approaches and Policy Designs – Call for papers

Atlanta, 27-29 September, 2006

Particular areas of interest include: new developments in university-industry relationships, new strategies for technology-based local and regional economic development, technology transfer to and from the public sector, trajectories for emerging technologies. All session proposals, paper proposals and abstracts should be submitted electronically not later than Friday, May 12, 2006.


The 9th Annual Conference of the Competitiveness Institute (TCI): The Role of Cluster Governance and Companies’ Involvement in Clusters Initiatives
Lyon, France, 9-13 October, 2006

The goal of this conference is to share ideas, build alliances and explore the best modes of economic development. Additionally information is offered about specific clusters, introductory courses on cluster theory and presentations given by an array of world experts (academics, businesses and institutions).The main topics include competitiveness, innovation, cluster initiatives, industrial organization and corporate change. The theme of the 9th conference will be “Governance and business involvement in cluster initiatives”.

Subscriptions & Comments

Please forward this newsletter to anyone you think will find it of value. We look forward to collaborating with you on this initiative. If you would like to comment on, or contribute to, the content, subscribe or unsubscribe, please contact us at

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