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Innovation priorities for UK bioenergy: technological expectations within path dependence

Levidow, Les; Papaioannou, Theo and Borda-Rodriguez, Alexander (2013). Innovation priorities for UK bioenergy: technological expectations within path dependence. Science & Technology Studies, 26(3) pp. 14–36.

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UK bioenergy innovation pathways have been locked into current energy infrastructure through technological expectations, especially the reciprocal requirements of state bodies and industry. Over the past decade UK policy has given bioenergy an increasingly important role for decarbonising the energy system; technoscientific innovation has been expected to expand the range of biomass that can be sustainably converted to energy. Needing industry investment to fulfil its policy aims, the UK government has faced requirements to provide long-term support measures. Innovation priorities have been shaped by policy arrangements closely involving industry with state bodies. Their expectations for future benefits have mobilised resources for bioenergy innovation mainly as input-substitutes within current energy infrastructural patterns; novel path creation lies within a path dependence. Although technical progress has encountered diffi culties and long delays, expectations for economic and environmental benefits have built support, while confl ating national benefi ts with private-sector interests. Through such expectations, innovation priorities wishfully enact some desired futures from among those which had been advocated in policy documents.

Item Type: Journal Item
Copyright Holders: 2013 The Finnish Society for Science and Technology Studies/Science & Technology Studies
ISSN: 2243-4690
Project Funding Details:
Funded Project NameProject IDFunding Body
Knowledge Production for Sustainable Bioenergy: An analysis of UK decision processes and prioritiesRES-062-23- 2701ESRC (Economic and Social Research Council)
Extra Information: Special Issue on Energy in Society: Energy Systems and Infrastructures in Society
Keywords: technological expectations; path dependence; energy infrastructure
Academic Unit/School: Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASS) > Politics, Philosophy, Economics, Development, Geography > Development
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASS) > Politics, Philosophy, Economics, Development, Geography
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASS)
Research Group: Innovation, Knowledge & Development research centre (IKD)
OpenSpace Research Centre (OSRC)
Institute for Innovation Generation in the Life Sciences (Innogen)
Item ID: 39162
Depositing User: Les Levidow
Date Deposited: 16 Dec 2013 10:42
Last Modified: 07 Dec 2018 19:18
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