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von Sebastian Losacker, Hendrik Hansmeier, Jens Horbach, Ingo Liefner

This article provides a critical literature review on the regional determinants of environmental innovation. The analysis of the relevant literature on supply-side factors, demand-side factors, and institutional factors reveals the importance of regional determinants in green technology development. Specifically, regional R&D collaborations, university-industry collaborations, and technological relatedness have positive effects on innovation activities in green domains. On the demand side, regional environmental awareness and demonstration effects play a pivotal role in the emergence and diffusion of environmental innovations. Environmental regulations also induce environmental innovation, however, there is only limited evidence at the regional level. [...]

von Sebastian Losacker, Jens Horbach, Ingo Liefner

In the transition to more sustainable regional economies, the widespread adoption of green technologies is crucial. However, little is known about the geography of green technology adoption and the relationship between regional demand and supply of green technologies. In this paper, we shed light on the (regional) factors explaining whether innovation adopters use green technologies that have been developed locally or green technologies that have been developed in other places. We analyze a unique data set of 8825 licensing agreements for Chinese patents in green technologies, which we use as an indicator to measure innovation diffusion. Our results suggest that the regional context plays a key role in predicting whether innovation adopters use local or nonlocal green technologies. We show, among other things, that the use of locally developed green technologies is more likely in regions characterized by green technology specializations and high innovation capacity than in less innovative regions.

von Sebastian Losacker, Stefanie Heiden, Ingo Liefner, Henning Lucas

Over the past two decades, a new research field dealing with “sustainability transitions” has emerged, analyzing the transformation of socio-technical systems towards more sustainable futures. While there is consensus on the crucial role of the bioeconomy in sustainability transitions research, we argue that the true potential of many bioeconomy innovations is not yet sufficiently recognized and assessed. Much of the literature on the bioeconomy focuses on the bio-based substitution of environmentally harmful goods, neglecting the disruptive potential of innovative biotechnologies. In this commentary, we present some examples on advanced biotechnology and we invite sustainability transitions scholars to rethink their notion of bioeconomy innovations.

von Hendrik Hansmeier, Sebastian Losacker

Given that eco-innovations and the associated renewal of economic structures are pivotal in addressing environmental problems, economic geography research is increasingly focusing on their spatio-temporal dynamics. While green technological and industrial path developments in specific regions have received considerable attention, little effort has been made to derive general patterns of environmental inventive activities across regions. Drawing on unique data capturing both green incumbent and green start-up activities in the 401 German NUTS-3 regions over the period 1997-2018, this article aims to trace and compare the long-term green regional development. [...]

von Ingo Liefner, Sebastian Losacker

Um soziale und ökologische Nachhaltigkeit zu erreichen, braucht es eine veränderte Wirtschaft. Hier stellen sich Herausforderungen auf globaler, nationaler und regionaler Ebene. Dieses Lehrbuch führt umfassend in die empirischen Grundlagen, Theorien und Politikinstrumente einer nachhaltig ausgerichteten Wirtschaftsgeographie ein und ist auch für Studierende benachbarter Fächer geeignet.

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