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

Authors: Benjamin K. Sovacool

Addresses: 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

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

Available online: 18 Aug 2008

Full-text access for editors Access for subscribers Purchase this article Comment on this article