Int. J. of Energy Technology and Policy   »   2008 Vol.6, No.4



Title: Innovating the innovators: the case for transformational energy Research and Development


Author: Benjamin K. Sovacool


Address: Energy Governance Program, Centre on Asia and Globalisation, Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy, National University of Singapore, Singapore


Abstract: This paper asks three interconnected questions: What type of energy R&D promotes long-term, transformative innovation? Which types of research do energy R&D organisations predominately practice? What are the consequences of their approaches? The paper begins by distinguishing between incremental and transformative R&D. Then, it documents five emerging energy challenges facing the USA and the world. Using the US Department of Energy (DOE) as a case study, it next explores whether that organisation is more dedicated to promoting incremental innovation or transformative change. The article concludes by offering some preliminary implications for American and international energy policy.


Keywords: energy R&D; research and development; renewable energy; innovation; R&D intensity; energy security; energy policy; energy efficiency; transformational R&D.


DOI: 10.1504/IJETP.2008.019955


Int. J. of Energy Technology and Policy, 2008 Vol.6, No.4, pp.368 - 380


Available online: 18 Aug 2008



Editors Full text accessPurchase this articleComment on this article