Strategic decisions on knowledge development and diffusion at pilot and demonstration projects: An empirical mapping of actors, projects and strategies in the case of circular forest bioeconomy
Journal article, 2020

The knowledge developed at pilot and demonstration projects (PDPs) plays an essential role for emerging biorefinery technologies. This research addresses the unexplored role of actor strategies in the construction and operation of PDPs. Drawing on the theory of technological innovation systems, we conduct a pan-European survey to map the current pilot and demonstration projects, their actors and strategies. An online survey has been carried out among managers of PDPs to explore the strategic decisions to develop and diffuse knowledge. The findings reveal that the knowledge developed at PDPs and diffused in PDP contexts tends to focus on the development of technological knowledge at lower stages of technological maturity, while activities related to non-technological knowledge and system build-up were given less importance. Overall, our findings indicate that the consideration of actor strategies is of central importance to explain the value of the knowledge developed in PDP contexts for the transition to a circular forest bioeconomy.


Trials and demonstration projects

Knowledge development

Strategic decision

Technological innovation system



Barbara Hedeler

Chalmers, Technology Management and Economics, Environmental Systems Analysis

Kompetenzzentrum Holz GmbH

Miriam Lettner

Kompetenzzentrum Holz GmbH

Tobias Stern

University of Graz

Peter Schwarzbauer

University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences

Franziska Hesser

Kompetenzzentrum Holz GmbH

Forest Policy and Economics

1389-9341 (ISSN)

Vol. 110 102027

Subject Categories

Social Sciences Interdisciplinary

History of Technology

Information Systemes, Social aspects



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