Interaction is essential in the innovation system
An innovation system is a broad-based collective that is formed by producers and utilisers of new knowledge and expertise and the interactive relationships between these two.
Innovation cannot be fixed by a single policy or set of measures. A range of policies – at the EU, national and local levels – have to be tuned to support innovation. The entire framework must not only allow for innovation, but also encourage and reward it. Enterprises need to be put in the centre to allow for truly business-driven innovation.
Actions are needed across entire policy areas, ranging from the foundations of our education system to the practical exploitation of new ideas. Business activities, education, R&D operations, a knowledgeable workforce and funding are all key components of an innovation system. Diverse international co-operation is an essential characteristic of an innovation system.
Significant producers of new knowledge within an innovation system include companies, universities and research institutes. The key funding bodies in Finland include the Finnish Funding Agency for Technology and Innovation (Tekes) and the Academy of Finland.
Key goals of the public actors in innovation systems:
- to support the innovation activities of companies
- to develop frameworks, infrastructures and services related to innovation systems
- to promote a culture of innovation
EK believes that the tasks, distribution of duties and activities of the public actors in the Finnish innovation system should be assessed and clarified. In addition, the incentive methods of the innovation policy should be developed to ensure that it recognises the rapidly changing needs of business.
Companies within different branches, especially SME’s, should be encouraged to pursue a broad range of innovation activities. Furthermore, the introduction of tax incentives aimed at the innovation activities of SME’s should be considered alongside direct public funding.
Development work should emphasise demand-based innovation policies and transforming know-how into business. Public procurement should be utilised to promote innovations.