Minding the gap between policymakers and researchers: The TIPC transformative learning history

TIP Learning History Cover Image

The year 2016 was the beginning of an exciting transformative journey for practitioners in the national science, technology and innovation agencies in Colombia, Finland, Norway, South Africa and Sweden. These institutions were the funders and partners of the Transformative Innovation Policy Consortium (TIPC), a global knowledge infrastructure for mutual learning in developing innovation policies for sustainable and just transition. They have worked alongside researchers at the Science Policy Research Unit (SPRU) at the University of Sussex Business School; the Global Centre for Global Challenges at the University of Utrecht; and INGENIO, a mixed-research Institute at the Unversitat Politecnica de Valencia and the Spanish Research Council (CSIC).

Over five years, the consortium members and other associates, researchers from the TIPC scholar networks (hereafter called TIP researchers) and regional HUBs, large networks of practitioners and policymakers and a globally expanding community of practice helped to enrich the theoretical and methodological bases of the transformative innovation policy (TIP). Most importantly, this ‘practitioner– policymaker—researcher partnership’ put into action principles, guidelines and methodologies related to processes and outcomes using a co-creation programme to develop experimentation in the real world. Although there is still room for development, it was a rich and meaningful journey full of creativity, diversion and conversion, agile design and challenges involving agreements and disagreements that resulted in valuable progress in creating a unique programme for learning and designing a transformative science, technology and innovation policy based on research and experimentation.

This learning history is an account of this learning; the main goals are:

  • To record TIPC’s journey over its five years and to reflect upon it.
  • To narrate our lived experience of TIPC based on distinct storylines.
  • To become more aware of the capabilities we developed.
  • To distil learnings from the partners (researchers and policymakers) highlighting diverse perspectives from the Global North and South, specifically Europe, Africa and Latin America.
  • To inform future TIPC collaboration.


Publication Year: 2022