Öberg, C. (in press). The role of innovation metrics in innovation systems. International Journal of Innovation Management.



In innovation systems, venture firms, incubators and science parks may interact with universities to achieve commercialisable output. These various parties are connected to different guiding performance metrics — measures on each party’s performance — that influence their behaviours. This paper illustrates and discusses the role of performance metrics among various parties in innovation systems connected with early research ideas from universities. The empirical part of the paper is based on interviews with 20 researchers and 10 representatives of various innovation system organisations in an EU-based research project. The paper points out how parties in the innovation process saw different reasons to participate which were strongly connected with how each party was evaluated and which caused sub-optimisation in behaviours. Previous research on innovation systems has not focused on the rationales and behaviours of parties. The focus on metrics targets an important point for understanding innovation processes involving several parties and specifically doing so for support organisations that cannot be measured on revenues or profits.