Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to provide a first exploratory overview of the Mediterranean system of innovation and present the results of interactive work with 25 innovation delegates from northern and southern Mediterranean countries. The study comes at a watershed for the Union for the Mediterranean, which is drawing up innovation policies for the future and debating ways of boosting core activities. Design/methodology/approach – This research benefits from the established literature on innovation systems (IS) to study how Mediterranean countries are enhancing their innovation capabilities. In collaboration with the European Institute of the Mediterranean, this research invited delegates from northern and southern Mediterranean countries, programme directors and representatives from the European Commission to discuss national and regional innovation activities in their own countries. Findings – The data shed light on how activities conducted by public and private organisations influence the IS functions, revealing shifting services and business models. Finally, the data highlighted the need to draw up an innovation strategy to boost R&D capabilities. Originality/value – The value of this research lies in the application of the well‐established IS approach to the Mediterranean case and a description of existing enabling and blocking mechanisms.
EuroMed Journal of Business – Emerald Publishing
Published: May 17, 2011
Keywords: Europe; International cooperation; Innovation