Discourses on Social Barriers in Russian (Counter)Innovation System: Reality or Narrative?

Publication type Article
Status Published
Affiliation: Southern Federal University
Address: Russian Federation, Rostov-on-Don
Journal nameSotsiologicheskie issledovaniya
EditionIssue 11

The aim of the study is to identify and critically analyze the explanations of the gap between the good level of Russian science and relatively weak development of domestic innovative production. The study of a series of expert interviews identified four key problems: low business demand for innovation; failures in public management of innovation studies; declining reproduction of scientific research personnel; and institutional barriers to patenting "real" innovation. Discourse analysis leads to the conclusion that the main brake for the Russian innovation system is the poor quality of public administration. Based on the approach of narrative economics, doubts are expressed about the unconditional objectivity of such a conclusion: experts can reproduce "viral" narratives (stereotypes), which distortedly reflect reality. A critical approach to the studied interviews shows that some "accusations" against government regulation of innovation studies are unreliable or inaccurate. Therefore, popular expert judgments about poor government regulation should be viewed as a superficial level of explanation of the failures of innovation studies in post-Soviet Russia.

Keywordssociology and economics of innovation studies, national innovation system, social factors of innovation studies, discourse analysis of innovation, narrative economics, government regulation
AcknowledgmentThis article is a translation of: Дискурсы о социальных барьерах российской (контр)инновационной системы: реальность или нарратив? // Sotsiologicheskie Issledovaniia. 2021. No 10: 61–71. DOI: 10.31857/S013216250016089-0
Publication date22.12.2021
Number of characters32382
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