Leadership Relay for Innovation Systems. Markku Sotarauta

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1 Leadership Relay for Innovation Systems Markku Sotarauta

2 The networked nature of smart strategies call for leadership, but o what is it like? o what is the role of leadership in building and enhancing innovation systems, and o how do key actors (and who are they) influence the course of events?

3 Customised leadership for different needs No one size fit for all formula for promoting innovativeness - not even among the Nordic countries (Asheim et al 2011) Innovation policies and practices do not vary only between countries but also within them (Tödling & Trippl 2005) Innovation policies and knowledge bases - analytical, synthetic, symbolic (Asheim et al. 2007) Unique advantages have to be actively constructed and innovation policies customised

4 Change Observable adaptive changes in regions are complex and contradictory processes o From long-term perspective they may be less revolutionary than often expected Gradual transformation, creeping change o No optimum state, constant search as a core in any adaption process o A punctuated equilibrium kind of change, where radical innovations take place between institutional reproductions, is not a viable option to study resilience and adaptation (cf Streeck and Thelen, 2005).

5 Emergence Emergence directs our attention to such qualities that appear from nowhere as a result of the many intertwined processes (Johnson, 2002) o Quite often it seems as if things simply happen o An emergent system develops organically and without any predestined goals, even though organizations and individuals have explicit goals to pursue Does this suggest that regional development is a totally uncontrolled process and policy-makers should not pretend otherwise?

6 Policy intentions Many scholars and practitioners alike stress and call for teleological explanations o shared purpose, consensus and co-operation are stressed as important factors in pursuing change o seldom acknowledge emergence as an important factor Intention = Intentional actors are resolved and determined to do something and who expose their willingness to act to other actors

7 In a world of emergence and intention Leadership is NOT a linear and straightforward process flowing from analysis to strategy formulation to implementation to desired outcomes Leadership is needed o for the construction of collective intentions and strategies on how to promote sustainable regional development and, o for taking advantage of emergent developments and minimizing their side effects.

8 Disconnected leadership and emergence Leadership leads to unanticipated events indicates strategic intention Emergent development

9 The emergence of regenerative medicine in Tampere, Finland Regenerative medicine o Biomedical approaches to heal the body by the stimulation of endogenous cells to repair damaged tissues, or the transplantation of cells or engineered tissues to replace diseased or injured ones (Riazi et al., 2009) In 2008, for the first time in the world, a patient s upper jaw was replaced with a bone transplant cultivated from stem cells isolated from the patient s own fatty tissue

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11 How it came to be? Seeds of change (97-00) o Process lead by two professors (substance knowledge) Construction of collective interpretation (01-04) o Process lead by a support community (policy and process knowledge) Launch of activity (04-07) o Process lead by the university (ie director of the new centre) (substance knowledge) Institutionalization (08-?) o Process lead by the Director of joint institute of two universities - BioMediTech (policy knowledge)

12 How it came to be? Seeds of change (97-00) o Process lead by two professors (substance knowledge) Construction of collective interpretation (01-04) o Belief formation o Process lead by a support community (policy and process knowledge) Launch of activity (04-07) o Process lead by the university (ie director of the new centre) (substance knowledge) Institutionalization (08-?) o Process lead by the Director of joint institute of two universities - BioMediTech (policy knowledge)

13 How it came to be? Seeds of change (97-00) o Process lead by two professors (substance knowledge) Construction of collective interpretation (01-04) o Process lead by a support community (policy and process knowledge) Launch of activity (04-07) o Process lead by the university (ie director of the new centre) (substance knowledge) Institutionalization (08-?) o Process lead by the Director of joint institute of two universities - BioMediTech (policy knowledge)

14 How it came to be? Seeds of change (97-00) o Process lead by two professors (substance knowledge) Construction of collective interpretation (01-04) o Process lead by a support community (policy and process knowledge) Launch of activity (04-07) o Process lead by the university (ie director of the new centre) (substance knowledge) Institutionalization (08-?) o Process lead by the Director of joint institute of two universities - BioMediTech (policy knowledge)

15 Leadership Independent actors make well informed synchronized decisions indicates strategic intention Creative tension Sense of urgency Strategic awareness Ambitious, believable story Visions between visions leads to unanticipated events Emergent development

16 Few observations Not only formally constituted hierarchical power (Liddle 2003; Sotarauta 2009) o Leaders work in unchartered territories, beyond traditional boundaries that is often ill-defined and networked, with imprecise boundaries and role ambiguity (Liddle 2003) Leadership is essentially a systemic not a personal quality. It is a process and a relationship (Parkinson et al 2012) o Leadership is the institutional mobilisation of all resources and partners to deliver successfully agreed long term ambitions through systematic, coherent strategies and policies. o Leadership is socially embedded (Peters 2012) Leadership is a relay in time (Sotarauta & Mustikkamäki 2012)

17 Conclusion Leadership is often seen simply as a relationship between leaders and those led, with the former setting goals and ensuring the latter follow through But NO Leadership is a process of influencing and teaching others to find needed activities and vision and how they could be accomplished Leadership is also about willingness to learn from the others Resilience requires several innovation journeys and leadership relays as their core

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