Science, technology and innovation policy

Joint OECD-Vinnova workshop: What are countries’ STI policy goals and actions in the covid-19 recovery?




 7-8 February 2022  Virtual workshop



Countries across the OECD have developed ambitious plans for STI policy to contribute to socio-technical transitions as the world recovers from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. These plans contain a broad variety of policy goals and instruments designed to support STI in a changing global environment, to tackle new and growing challenges in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, and to apply new tools and approaches to STI policy making, especially digital tools, that emerged in the context of the pandemic.

These plans take a variety of forms but are expected to have several common characteristics – namely a growing focus on sustainability, resilience, and inclusivity. The means by which countries approach these goals can be profoundly different, even when the goals are similar.

One such instrument is the RRF, a key component of the Next Generation EU (NGEU) programme, which is designed to make 672.5 billion euros (at 2018 prices) available to the countries of the European Union to respond to the economic and social consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic. The RRF is focused on encouraging structural changes and transitions: in particular, transitions that are “green” and “digital”.

It remains to be seen, however, how those plans translate into implementation, and what kinds of goals they, in practice, target. National STI transition plans also show profound differences that reflect their different drafting processes, which involved different mixes of institutional and societal actors. The ways in which the process of drafting STI strategies influences their content are not well understood.

Synthesising large numbers of strategy documents, especially across countries, has historically been challenging for policy makers and analysts, and as such has received limited attention as an area of study. Recent years, however, have seen the development and improvement of computational tools that make it possible to analyse large and complex documents in bulk; one of the most promising of these techniques is “semantic analysis”. Semantic analysis can be particularly useful to examine the changing content and meaning of key concepts in policy documents over time and between countries. 


WORKSHOP document



Session 1 - Policy Transitions: The nature, function, and global landscape of STI strategy, Hunter McGuire


Session 2 - Policy Transitions: Introduction to methods and insights from analysis of six countries, Caroline Paunov, Hunter McGuire and Jan Einhoff


Consortium - Session 2- Transformative innovation policy and the recovery and resilience packages in Austria , Finland and Sweden, Austrian Insitute of Technology (AIT) (Matthias Weber, Bernhard Dachs, Finnish Environment Institute , Syke (Paula Kivimaa , David Lazarevic , Jani Lund University (Sylvia Schwaag Serger) and Vinnova (Göran Marklund, Lennart Stenberg, Daniel).




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