The technological innovation systems framework: Response to six criticisms
Journal article, 2015

The technological innovation systems framework (TIS) is widely used to study the emergence and growth of new technological fields and industries. At the same time, it has been criticized for a number of issues and innovation scholars have made suggestions of how to improve the framework. In this viewpoint, we respond to six areas of criticism: (1) TIS context, (2) system delineation, (3) spatial aspects, (4) transitions, (5) politics, and (6) policy recommendations. We point to promising conceptual developments of how to address shortcomings and highlight needs for further research. We also discuss the prospects of the TIS approach for the analysis of socio-technical transitions. The TIS framework, in our view, has the potential to outgrow its original scope - explaining the dynamics and performance of a technological field - and to address many of the issues relevant when studying transitions.


Technological innovation systems


Technological change



J. Markard

Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zürich (ETH)

M. Hekkert

Utrecht University

Staffan Jacobsson

Chalmers, Energy and Environment, Environmental Systems Analysis

Environmental Innovation and Societal Transitions

22104224 (eISSN)

Vol. 16 Sept. 76-86

Subject Categories

Economics and Business

History of Technology

Other Social Sciences not elsewhere specified



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