Mobilizing Innovation System in BIH for SME Innovation Capabilities – Subproject: Innovation Survey and Analysis
Capability to innovate continuously is to be considered as one of the main prerequisites for maintaining the competitiveness of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) on dynamic markets. However, for SMEs in emerging economies, such as those in the Western Balkans, this is related to major challenges. In addition to internal bottlenecks, SMEs are particularly dependent on the innovation system in which they operate. This particularly includes the political, legal and institutional framework for innovation activities. In recent years, Bosnia and Herzegovina (BIH) has made progress through various policy initiatives to strengthen innovation activities in the country; however, these measures are sporadic and lack a systematic approach in most cases. To create a target- and addressee-oriented innovation policy, political decision-makers require knowledge about the innovation behaviour of SMEs. What lacks most in this respect is systematic monitoring of the innovation activities of the Bosnian innovation system. For instance, there is very little evidence about the innovation actors and their innovation issues. As a result, there is hardly any established practical knowledge that can be used to mobilize the innovation system and strengthen the innovation capacity of the actors. Based on this gap, this research project aims to design and conduct a national innovation survey based on a clear methodology and, building on this, to establish a framework for an effective SME-oriented innovation policy in BIH. For the design and implementation of innovation policy research in BIH, the project also aims, on the one hand, to enable scientific capacity building (incl. targeted training) of young researchers in both countries and, on the other, to support policy makers in designing evidence-based innovation policy measures and instruments using the innovation policy framework developed in the project.