Systemic problems affecting co-innovation in the New Zealand Agricultural Innovation System: Identification of blocking mechanisms and underlying institutional logics

J.A. Turner, L.W.A. Klerkx, Kelly Rijswijk, T. Williams, T. Barnard

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64 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This study identifies systemic problems in the New Zealand Agricultural Innovation System (AIS) in rela-tion to the AIS capacity to enact a co-innovation approach, in which all relevant actors in the agriculturalsector contribute to combined technological, social and institutional change. Systemic problems are fac-tors that negatively influence the direction and speed of co-innovation and impede the developmentand functioning of innovation systems. The contribution in the paper is twofold. Firstly, it combinesboth innovation system functions and systemic problems in an integrated analysis to asses an AIS at acountry level, which has not been done previously in AIS literature. Secondly, it deepens the genericliterature on structural-functional innovation systems analysis by looking at the interconnectednessbetween systemic problems and how these create core blocking mechanisms linked to the prevalentinstitutional logics (historically built-up and persistent structures and institutional arrangements) of theAIS. Results indicate that the existing New Zealand AIS has three main blocking mechanisms related tothree institutional logics: (i) competitive science in silos, (ii) laissez faire innovation, and (iii) sciencecentered innovation. These findings resemble weaknesses of AIS in other countries, and provide support-ive evidence that co-innovation principles in many places have not yet been translated into agriculturalinnovation policies due to persistent and interlocked blocking mechanism and institutional logics. Theypoint to the absence of effective systemic innovation policy instruments that pro-actively stimulate andsupport co-innovation. These instruments facilitate the counteracting of individual systemic problemsand have a more transformative ambition; tackling the key institutional logics that hinder co-innovation,and hence supporting ‘structural system innovation’.
Original languageEnglish
Article number76
Pages (from-to)99-112
JournalNJAS Wageningen Journal of Life Sciences
Volume76
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2016

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