The Emergence of Regional Technological
Capabilities and Transatlantic
A Bibliometric Study of Public-Private, EU-U.S.
ELLAS G. CARAYANNIS
A significant stream of research in science and technology policy is dedicated to describing and analyzing national innovation systems and the relationship between the features of a nation’s innovation system and its global technological competitiveness (Nelson, 2003). According to Metcalfe (1995), a national innovation system is
a set of distinct institutions which jointly and individually contribute to the
development and diffusion of new technologies and which provide the framework
within which governments form and implement policies to influence the innovation
process. As such it is a system of interconnected institutions to create, store and
transfer the knowledge, skills and artifacts, which define new technologies.
A key assumption of the theory supporting the concept of a national innovation system is that innovation is a boundary-spanning activity which often involves multiple organizations working collectively, either consciously or unconsciously. This supposition is supported by the finding that much of the basic research which advances scientific knowledge is now conducted as a collaborative activity, rather than as a collection of individual efforts. Studies in the field of scientometrics have found, for example, that coauthored articles constitute a large and growing share of the scientific literature produced each year (Narin and Withlow, 1990; Melin and Persson, 1996). As stated succinctly by Ziman (1994), “The organizational units of modem science are not individuals, but groups” (p. 227).