Contrasting transformative experiments through variegated representations of space

Past Event
19 January 2022 15:00 (GMT)
19 January 2022 16:30 (GMT)

Meta-frameworks have undoubted advantages for public policy – they can help to articulate new imaginaries and can serve as guides towards specific actions (and as vehicles for funding). But there can also be downsides, especially when practices inspired by these meta-narratives are crudely imposed across different physical spaces with little or no consultation or adjustment to local circumstances. This raises broader analytical question of how do policy narratives – and an associated set of policy practices to support this – influence transitions processes when applied across very different geographies? The subsequent challenge is to develop a methodology to empirically study this question when faced with complex patterns of relationships that make spaces unique but also create unevenness in processes of transitions.

Despite these complexities, the growing demand for new meta-narratives to support transitions processes puts the onus on researchers to study how policy narratives and policy practices are implemented and applied across spaces and how these are received and interpreted by different actors across different spaces. In other words, how can policy narratives and policy practices remain relevant, beneficial and useful from the perspective of transformations when they travel across different contextual spaces? These questions force us to go beyond the remit of STI policy and to engage with broader discussions of new forms of public policy for transformative change. We begin briefly tracing debates around relational forms of governance before addressing the question of spatial differences.

Ref: #36

Conceptualisation of innovation for transformative change


Matias Ramirez
Science Policy Research Unit
Matias Ramirez is Senior Lecturer at the Science Policy Research Unit (SPRU) at the University of Sussex Business School where TIPC was founded. He is Principal Investigator for TIPC at SPRU, Co-Director as part of the Consortium's Management Group, and coordinates the work of TIPC in Latin America. This includes the partnership with Minciencias and the writing of the Green Book policy document in Colombia in 2018, and the work on mapping the sustainable development goals of the national research system of Mexico funded by CONACYT. In 2020 he helped to create Latin America Hub, involving organisations from a number of countries including Colombia, Chile and Mexico. Much of his current research activity is related to transformative innovation policy in Latin America, including studies of social movements, development of SDG indicators for transformative change and spatial dimensions of transitions.
Caetano C. R. Penna
Senior Research Fellow
University of Utrecht's Centre for Global Challenges
Caetano C. R. Penna is Senior Research Fellow at the Utrecht University Centre for Global Challenges (Netherlands) and Adjunct Professor (currently on leave) at the Institute of Economics of the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro. Dr. Penna also acts as expert advisor to the Technology Directorate of the Rio de Janeiro science, technology and innovation agency FAPERJ. He holds a doctorate in science and technology policy studies from SPRU, University of Sussex (United Kingdom), a master's degree in technological governance from the TalTech University (Estonia) and a bachelor's degree in economic sciences from the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro. His research interests include transformative “mission-oriented” policies and financing for sustainability transitions. In the MOTION project, Dr Penna coordinates the co-creation and testing of the formative evaluation methodology that integrates transformative outcomes into the EIT Climate-KIC initiative on Sustainable Shared Mobility (SuSMO).
Alejandra Boni
Alejandra Boni is professor at Universitat Politècnica de València (Spain) and deputy director of INGENIO (CSIC-UPV). She is honorary professor at the University of the Free State in South Africa. Her research interest focus on human development, higher education, global citizenship and transformative innovation. She is leading the experimentation and formative evaluation component of the Transformative Innovation Policy Consortium.
Imraan Patel
Imraan Patel is a public policy and strategy manager with a focus on innovation, sustainability, social and economic development, and public management and governance. Employed since 2006 at the South African Department of Science and Technology, he holds the position of Deputy Director-General: Socio-Economic Partnerships and represents the department on the social and economic clusters of government and the advisory committee for the Green Fund. Areas of focus include Information and Communications Technologies, Sector Development, Climate Change and Biodiversity, Environmental Technologies, Advanced Manufacturing, Mining and Minerals Beneficiation, Chemicals, Technology Localisation and Innovation for Inclusive Development.
Jordi Molas-Gallart
Jordi Molas Gallart is a Research Professor at the Spanish National Research Council (CSIC), and Director of INGENIO (CSIC-UPV), a joint research centre of CSIC and the Polytechnic University of Valencia. INGENIO is the leading Spanish centre in the study of research and innovation processes, with a staff of some 40 researchers and support staff. Jordi's research focuses on the evaluation of science and technology policies. He has led and contributed to many research projects for a wide variety of organisations, including the UK Medical Research Council (MRC) and the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), the French and British ministries of defence, INSERM, the Joint Research Centre of the European Commission, and the Russell Group of British universities among many others. He has been a member of many European Commission expert groups, and chaired the Science Europe working group on Research Policy and Programme Evaluation and was editor of Research Evaluation, a journal published by Oxford University Press, between 2013 and 2020. Within TIPC Jordi works on developing and implementing the Consortium’s approach to evaluation. Evaluation is a key concern of many of the organisations that conform TIPC but the dominant approaches to STI policy evaluation do not fit the systemic objectives and inclusive philosophy that characterises TIPC. TIPC is implementing a novel set of approaches to innovation policy and this need to be accompanied by evaluation strategies that are aligned with the Consortium's principles and tools.
Johan Schot
University of Utrecht's Centre for Global Challenges
Johan Schot is Professor of Global History and Sustainability Transitions at the Utrecht University Centre for Global Challenges (UGLOBE) in the Netherlands. Johan was founding academic director for the Transformative Innovation Policy Consortium and the Deep Transitions research project and is a co-director on the Consortium's management group. He was previously Director of the Science Policy Research Unit (SPRU) at the University of Sussex Business School in the UK from 2014-2018. Johan is an academic entrepreneur, who builds bridges between science and practice by applying a transdisciplinary research approach. He works with actors from different academic disciplines, policy-makers, governments, civil society, NGOs, the media and the business world to address the biggest challenges of our times such as climate change and social inequality.