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Biotechnology innovation systems in two small countries: A comparison of Portugal and Ireland

Calvert, J   Senker, J

Science and Public Policy   31 (5) 359-370

January 2004

This paper analyses and compares the policies that are likely to influence the development of biotechnology in two small European Union (EU) Member States (Ireland and Portugal) from an innovation systems perspective. It looks at how the actors present in each country perceive the relative effectiveness of these policies. By drawing on both quantitative data and qualitative interviews, the paper asks whether differences in performance in these two countries can be traced back to specific systems failures. Findings indicate that Portugal is less successful than Ireland overall, and that this is partially because Portugal suffers from a failure of industrial demand. The paper concludes that an integrated set of policies addressing both development of the knowledge base and commercialisation are needed for the successful promotion of biotechnology in a country.