Special Issue of the Triple Helix Journal – Call for papers

Special Issue of the Triple Helix Journal (ISSN: 2197-1927) “Triple Helix Futures” – Call for papers


Triple Helix Journal

Special Issue Co-Editors:
Ekaterina Albats, LUT-University, Finland
Rabii Outamha, University of Hassan II, Morocco
Henry Etzkowitz, International Triple Helix Institute (ITHI), Silicon Valley, USA

Deadline for extended abstracts: May 31st 2019

New perspectives towards Triple Helix innovation and entrepreneurship phenomenon are sought, from the array of relevant disciplines and inter-disciplines, across different levels of analysis – from micro to meso to macro-, spanning the range of policy orientations.
The Triple Helix of University-Industry-Government relations provides a model for analysing the transitions from a statist command economy or a market (industrial) economy to a knowledge-based society (Etzkowitz, 1996; Ivanova and Leydesdorff, 2014; Etzkowitz and Zhou, 2018), where the role of an entrepreneurial university in innovation is increasingly salient (Etzkowitz, 1983). Originally focused on renewing declining industrial regions (Etzkowitz, 2002), then on creating new regional innovation ecosystems (Etzkowitz, Pique and Mirabel, 2018). Triple Helix both rose to support national and multinational initiatives, and lowered to strengthen micro-foundations Linton, 2018). The Triple Helix model was also taken beyond the knowledge-based realm of Clusters and Techno-poles and applied to solve social inequalities and foster arts/design innovation (Etzkowitz, 2014).
A Triple Helix configuration can be considered as a collective entrepreneur, principal agent, facilitator and enabler of knowledge creation, technology transfer and firm formation (Leydesdorff, 2005; Bresnitz, and Etzkowitz, 2016). Moreover, it is a universal innovation and entrepreneurship model that incorporates other relevant models (National Innovation Systems, Open Innovation, Mode 2 in its capacious framework (Etzkowitz and Leydesdorff, 2000; Leydesdorff, 2000)). Transcending “learning by doing” and other forms of incremental innovation (Lundvall, 2000; Rosenberg, 1982), discontinuous innovation relies on academic knowledge as a structural element and source for innovation in knowledge-based societies (Cooke and Leydesdorff, 2006; Schumpeter, 1911). The sources of innovation and entrepreneurship, in turn, do not reside exclusively inside firms (Fusfeld, 1994), but are commonly found in the interstices between firms (Chesbrough, 2003); firms and universities (Powell, 1990) as well as government (Etzkowitz, Gulbrandsen and Levitt, 2000.)
Various versions of the Triple Helix model have been identified, emphasizing top-down, bottom-up or lateral initiatives as well as some combination of those. Originally focused primarily on economic development, the Triple Helix model has been extended to environmental and social sustainability (Zhou and Etzkowitz, 2006) and tasked to develop a “triple helix ethics” (Etzkowitz, 2011). Civil society is posited as the framework of an optimum Triple Helix configuration, but constricted and hidden civil societies have also been identified as conducive to innovation under totalitarian conditions (Solzhenitsyn, 1968). In authoritarian societies where “bottom-up” initiatives are considered a threat to public order and lateral interactions, without top-down approval are interdicted, entrepreneurial arrangements among trusted peers appear in order to get things done. In such circumstances, the innovative discourse may have to be hidden in circumlocutions of speech, distributed via “samizdat” and obscured in “we chats” that “read between the lines” (Strauss, 1968).
Triple Helix is an increasingly widespread academic, policy and practice discourse but it has also achieved a broader reach as a shorthand kleenex-like emblem for public/private/academic movements, delinked from theoretical provenance (Gebhardt and Etzkowitz, 2019). Re-establishing ties between implicit and explicit helical innovation is an opportunity for academic analysts and practitioners to enhance each other’s work and open up new areas for collaboration. The Triple Helix is not just a model but a venue, virtual and physical, periodically providing a meeting place for scholars, professionals, and policy-makers who address the transition to a knowledge-based economy and society (Granovetter, 2017) from a variety of development perspectives and at different geo-technic levels, but with a common interest in making the discussion informed by empirical research, methodological rigour and theoretical perspicacity (cf: www.triplehelixassociation.org).
Triple Helix theorizing has not claimed a general theory of societal development, nevertheless, it has potential as such through the development of a methodology for social change, transcending Capitalism and Socialism. Studying the dynamics and evolution of the Triple Helix relations provides the scientific landscape with the new dimensions and variables responsible for the emergence of the knowledge-based system (Leydesdorff et al., 2019) – e. g. the redundancy emerging from the Triple Helix actors sharing knowledge with each other and creating a space for discourse around their different perspectives towards same events. Triple Helix futurists are charged to explore the potential of Triple Helix theory and practice for Social Justice, conceptually, via philosophical thought experiments, quantitatively through computer-based AI simulations (Carayannis et al., 2016), offering new measurements and analysing inter-organizational structural and institutional configurations (Leydesdorff and Ivanova, 2016) as well as through traditional political economic argumentation and analysis (Burgos-Mascarell et al., 2016).
Celebrating more than three decades of Triple Helix (Etzkowitz, 1993, Etzkowitz and Leydesdorff, 1995), this special issue aims to inspire new questions, discoveries, visions and aspirations for the future of this field. This special issue is a forum for all who are interested in Triple Helix aiming to gather the best examples of empirical studies and theoretical reflections that showcase originality, new thinking, views, contexts, data and methods about the phenomenon. We are also interested in works that develop new conceptual frameworks, integrate other theoretical fields across innovation and knowledge management related domains and reflect on those with empirical data and fresh observations. Articles investigating individual innovation initiators (III), regional innovation organizers (RIO), as well as innovation modalities powered by intermediaries such as Science Parks, incubators, accelerators, and technology transfer offices (Peters and Etzkowitz, 1998) and novel sources beyond the classic Triple Helix, are also most welcome.

Possible questions addressed by the contributions include, but are not limited to:

  • Following the initial considerations of Leydesdorff and Etzkowitz, 1998), how different is studying the Triple Helix relations in various regional, institutional, economic, cultural and other contextual settings (Etzkowitz and Klofsten, 2008)? What new insights those various contextual settings may bring to the classical Triple Helix model? For example, what are the specifics of the Triple Helix relations and its synergy in emerging economies (Etzkowitz, Mello and Almeida, 2008; Leydesdorff et al., 2014; Park, 2014)? How those look like in developed economies? What are the specifics of the Triple Helix in cross-cultural settings? What are the “best practices” of university-industry-government relationships and/or what are the failure cases in various settings, and what are then the implications for the Triple Helix as a research theme (Etzkowitz, 2018)?
  • How and under which conditions can the synergy in university-industry-government relations emerge in the transition from a statist command economy or a market (industrial) economy to a more complex knowledge-based economy? And how can this synergy be measured? What is the role and future of university in this new, Triple Helix synergy configuration? Case studies enable us to gain subtle insights in the trade-offs between traditional and entrepreneurial roles of the university (Clark, 2001). How do universities combine entrepreneurship and responsible innovation with their roles of providing higher education, their enlightenment functions, and long-term research perspectives? What are the gender, class and intersectional dimensions of triple helix interactions in different cultures (Kiehl, Kemelgor and Etzkowitz, In Press)
  • What new insights are suggested by analysing various helices (see e.g. Meyer et al., 2003), actors or structural arrangements (see e.g. Champenois and Etzkowitz, 2018) of the Triple Helix? How leadership, policy and governance of each helix could affect the Triple Helix model functioning in various contexts? How various stakeholders may influence the relationships between helices? Do those offer any new considerations to the structure, dynamics or evolution of the Triple Helix mode?
  •  What are the new or alternative methodologies in analysing the Triple Helix relations? E.g. what could be the novel methods to analyse network relationships in the Triple Helix context (Park, 2014)? Or what are the new/alternative ways and indicators to measure the university-industry-government relations: its performance, efficiency and effectiveness of the related processes, its outputs, outcomes and impacts (Goktepe-Hulten, 2009; Rossi and Rosli, 2015); its dynamics, evolution and changes in its structural configurations (Leydesdorff et al., 2019)? What have been the methodological developments to advance the Triple Helix as a research field? E.g. what should be still learned by the scientific community in terms of the units and levels of analysis, and what are the prospects of the multi-level (Bogers et al., 2017) and mixed method research strategies in the Triple Helix field?
  • What are the prospects of the theoretical developments of the Triple Helix concept? What new insights the existing or emerging theories and concepts may offer to advance the development of the Triple Helix model (Viale and Etzkowitz, 201)? Or what are the novel applications of the Triple Helix model in various fields and/or in cross-disciplinary settings Dzisah and Etzkowitz, 2009)? What are the potential synergies between Triple Helix and global approaches, such as World Systems, to societal analysis, innovation and entrepreneurship (Krucken and Drori, 2009).

Dr. Ekaterina Albats, postdoctoral researcher, lecturer, School of Business and Management, LUT-University, Finland
Rabii Outamha, PhD Candidate, Faculty of law economic and social sciences, University of Hassan II, Casablanca, Morocco
Professor Henry Etzkowitz, President, Triple Helix Association, EiC, Triple Helix Journal; CEO, International Triple Helix Institute, Silicon Valley and member Advisory Boards, International Association of Science Parks and Innovation Areas (IASP) and Helix Centre, Linkoping University, Sweden

Submission instructions
Deadline for extended abstracts (1000-1500 words): May 31st 2019
Contributions invited from PhD students and recent graduates (2 to 3 years after degree award), as well as non-PhD professionals who’s interested in making a scientific contribution and may like to join a PhD programme in the future. We are interested in all topics related to Triple Helix innovation and entrepreneurship.
Papers already accepted for the XVI Triple Helix Conference, Manchester and for the II International Triple Helix Summit, Dubai are considered to have passed the first level of desk review and will be sent for THJ double blind peer review immediately.
Submit through Brill Editorial Manager system.

New submissions should go into the Brill Editorial Manager system with a copy to the Topical Collection Guest Editors:   Ekaterina.Albats@lut.fi   outamha.rabii@gmail.com   Henry.etzkowitz@triplehelix.net

Best papers’ authors, after the subscription of the THA student membership fee (30/60€ per year), can receive the APC fee waiver from the THA, if the related cost will not be covered by the respective institutions which authors are affiliated to.


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