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The authors review the literature on national innovation systems. They first focus on the emergence of the concept of innovation systems, reviewing its historical origins and three main flavours (associated to three "Founding fathers" of the concept). After this, they discuss how the notion of innovation systems filled a need for providing a broader basis for innovation policy. They conclude with some perspectives on the future of the innovation systems literature. The particular focus on invention and technical change as central factors behind economic growth and development is, as Joel Mokyr illustrates in Chapter 1, of relatively recent origin (Mokyr, 2010).
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