Dealing with incumbent regimes: Deliberateness and serendipity of innovation agency

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This paper addresses how actors in niche innovation projects interact with existing socio-technical regimes. The focus is on actor strategies deployed to create changes in the institutional environment of projects in order to establish a more conducive environment for niche projects. The paper identifies several such effective reformism strategies: framing novelties within existing rules, seeking outright confrontation and challenging or bypassing the current institutional context, and “guerilla tactics” in which pressure is gradually built up at different economic and political levels. Tangible visions and boundary spanning actors that fulfill boundary spanning roles are essential here. Niche project actors need to continuously re-interpret the contexts in which they move, although they can only partly influence these contexts. Keywords: agricultural innovation systems, niches, agency, institutional environment, effective reformism, innovation journeys, The Netherlands
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 9th European IFSA Symposium, 4-7 July 2010, Vienna, Austria
EditorsI. Darnhofer, M. Grötzer
Place of PublicationVienna
PublisherIFSA Europe
ISBN (Print)9783200019089
Publication statusPublished - 2010
Event9th European IFSA Symposium, Vienna, Austria -
Duration: 4 Jul 20107 Jul 2010


Conference9th European IFSA Symposium, Vienna, Austria

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