Fraunhofer Institute for
Systems and Innovation Research ISI

Lead Market Strategies: First Mover, Early Follower, Late Follower

Lead Market Strategies and Systems Dynamic


Sustainable development can only be achieved with far-reaching environmental innovations and their rapid international diffusion. Crucial in this context are the development and expansion of lead markets in which the experiences can be collected which will ena-ble fast technological learning. During globalization, emerging economies are preparing to assume technological leadership. Against this background, economies must position themselves stra-tegically. The global inter-relationships require not only the identifi-cation of lead market potentials for countries like Germany or for communities of states like the EU, but also the integration of the specific interests of fast-growing economies.

Target + Tasks

The project aims to continue developing the lead market approach in order to arrive at solid knowledge and decision-making basis for strategic positioning. At the same time, the planned research should also further develop the analysis of the interactions of "Technology, Economic Development and Trade" – specifically for sustainability innovations. Fraunhofer ISI will in particular carry out case studies in the fields of water management and bio-fuels. In addition, the lead market concept will also be partly quantified by calculating export potentials using a further developed systems dynamic model to quantify world export shares.

Running period

October 2010 - September 2013


BMBF, promotional initiative „Economics for Sustainability“


The project will be conducted in cooperation with the Center for European Economic Research (ZEW) in Mannheim and the Re-search Center for Environmental Policy (FFU) at the FU Berlin