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Soft InnovationEconomics, Product Aesthetics, and the Creative Industries$
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Paul Stoneman

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780199572489

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199572489.001.0001

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Soft Innovation and Government Policy

Soft Innovation and Government Policy

(p.301) 12 Soft Innovation and Government Policy
Soft Innovation

Paul Stoneman

Oxford University Press

This chapter considers policy issues. Given the potential benefits of soft innovation it is natural to consider whether government can speed up or extend such activity. However, this is not necessarily welfare desirable. The real issue concerns whether markets will or will not, unaided, produce the welfare optimal outcome. The literature considered shows that this question cannot be answered irrefutably in either direction. Market failure is thus not a strong ground on which to base policy intervention. Alternatively, international comparisons of soft innovation performance may be used by governments as a basis for policy. The chapter shows that the UK is not the international leader in soft innovation. Looking at returns to the Community Innovation Survey provides some insight into barriers to innovations and may be argued to support certain policy interventions. There is also only limited evidence on the potential effectiveness of policies.

Keywords:   Community Innovation Survey, contestability, finance for innovation, information provision, innovation policy, standards, subsidies, tax incentives

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