Save the Date! 20-21 September 2017,
Pretoria, South Africa,

Background to the Transformative Innovation Policy Consortium

Governments, funding bodies and international organisations across the world want innovation to address societal or grand challenges such as access to food and energy, rising inequality, inclusion, and climate change. However it is far from clear how to formulate, implement or govern challenge-led Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) policies. The challenges cannot be solved by optimising current scientific and technological solutions but instead require re-thinking in our conventional approaches to STI policies and policymaking. There is therefore a need to develop new, more effective policies and instruments for innovation.

The Transformative Innovation Policy Consortium (TIPC) is an initiative that aims to address these global challenges through joint research between academics and policymakers. Together, the founding members from Colombia, Finland, Norway, South Africa, Sweden and the Science Policy Research Unit (SPRU) at the University of Sussex are formulating a new way of framing and delivering innovation policy to promote long-term transformative change and innovation across different sectors, societies, systems and structures. The members are developing the vocabulary with which to test ideas about transformative innovation and the case examples that help to articulate what it means in practice. This conference marks the culmination of the year-long pilot programme of TIPC activities

After September the Consortium is opening up for new members to go through an inception phase, and beginning 2018 the Consortium aims to launch a 5 year programme of research, policy experimentation, training and evaluation of transformative innovation policy.

Prospects for Transformative Innovation Conference - Pretoria, South Africa,
September 20-21

This conference will be hosted by the National Research Foundation (NRF) in partnership with the South African Department of Science and Technology (DST) and the Transformative Innovation Policy Consortium. This two-day event will be dedicated to transformative innovation policy and will bring together researchers, policy makers, business, international organisations, NGOs, civil society and other stakeholders to discuss the insights from the TIPC pilot programme as well as present and discuss relevant and related work in this emerging policy area.

Following a key-note presentation on the insights from year one of the Transformative Innovation Policy Consortium, the conference will be structured as a series of dialogue sessions. Participants will have the opportunity to present a paper, propose a session or topic for discussion and collectively develop new ideas. There will also be an opportunity to network with current members of the TIPC to understand their motivations, experience and insights as founding members of this pioneering programme.

Participants will have the opportunity to:

  • Engage with a new way of thinking about STI policy related to societal challenges and engage with other countries to explore ways to develop effective STI policies that deal with challenges including inequality, inclusion, climate change and access to food and water
  • Consider the potential relevance of TIPC to current STI policy challenges in their specific country context and/or from an international perspective
  • Discuss how their current ways of thinking about science, technology and innovation policy might reflect, conflict with or feed in to the current work of the TIPC
  • Discuss workable models of cooperation that would enable new partnerships and opportunities to develop the ideas of transformative innovation policy into the next phase

Who will attend?

It is expected that 120-150 people will attend and the event is by invitation only. Delegates will come from many different countries and will be a mix of researchers, policy-makers, international organisations and NGOs working on issues related to science, technology and innovation policy.

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