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Creating Silicon Valley in EuropePublic Policy Towards New Technology Industries$
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Steven Casper

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780199269525

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2007

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199269525.001.0001

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The German biotechnology industry: the limits of orchestrated innovation

The German biotechnology industry: the limits of orchestrated innovation

Chapter:
(p.74) 4 The German biotechnology industry: the limits of orchestrated innovation
Source:
Creating Silicon Valley in Europe
Author(s):

Steven Casper (Contributor Webpage)

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199269525.003.0004

Germany has long been categorized as an organized or coordinated market economy. Moreover, a key prediction of comparative institutional theory is that Germany should perform poorly in radically innovative industries such as biotechnology. In the mid 1990s, the German government launched a series of wide-ranging public policies with the aim of developing a world-class biotechnology industry. This chapter examines these policies and evaluates their success in creating a sustainable biotechnology industry in Germany. German policies have created a large industry, in terms of the number of companies launched, in a short period of time. However, empirical evidence suggests that this industry has not become sustainable, in terms of generating adequate venture capital finance for companies or generating an active labor market for scientists and managers working within the industry. These problems are linked to long-standing institutional arrangements in the areas of finance, corporate governance, and labor market regulation, suggesting that the ability of governments to circumvent national institutional frameworks may be limited.

Keywords:   Germany, coordinated market economy, venture capital, labor market organization, BioRegio program, technology policy, cluster policy, commercializing science

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