Shaping socio-technical innovation through policy

The Knowledge, Innovation and Strategy department of the Ministry of Infrastructure and the Environment has commissioned the Rathenau Instituut to draft a memorandum in order to be able to develop the theme of “policy in times of singularity” in the new Strategic Knowledge and Innovation Agenda. Specifically, we were asked to provide the following: suggestions for reformulation of, partial answers to, and paths of enquiry for knowledge requirements relating to challenges in dealing with unpredictable innovation specific to the Ministry of Infrastructure and the Environment.

This essay creates a framework for the demand for knowledge that innovative trends and developments might provoke when it comes to policymaking. The focus is on determining the extent to which innovation does or does not present a challenge to policy and the type of response required. In drafting our document, we drew on cases investigated by the Rathenau Instituut (including MacLaine Pont & Deuten, in progress; Royakkers & Van Est, 2016) and additional research conducted as part of this project.