Advanced

Spatial lifecycles of cleantech industries - The global development history of solar photovoltaics

Binz, Christian LU ; Tang, Tian and Huenteler, Joern (2016) In Energy Policy 101. p.386-402
Abstract

New industries develop in increasingly globalized networks, whose dynamics are not well understood by academia and policy making. Solar photovoltaics (PV) are a case in point for an industry that experienced several shifts in its spatial organization over a short period of time. A lively debate has recently emerged on whether the spatial dynamics in new cleantech sectors are in line with existing industry lifecycle models or whether globalization created new lifecycle patterns that are not fully explained in the literature. This paper addresses this question based on an extensive analysis of quantitative data in the solar PV sector. Comprehensive global databases containing 86,000 patents as well as manufacturing and sales records are... (More)

New industries develop in increasingly globalized networks, whose dynamics are not well understood by academia and policy making. Solar photovoltaics (PV) are a case in point for an industry that experienced several shifts in its spatial organization over a short period of time. A lively debate has recently emerged on whether the spatial dynamics in new cleantech sectors are in line with existing industry lifecycle models or whether globalization created new lifecycle patterns that are not fully explained in the literature. This paper addresses this question based on an extensive analysis of quantitative data in the solar PV sector. Comprehensive global databases containing 86,000 patents as well as manufacturing and sales records are used to analyze geographic shifts in the PV sector's innovation, manufacturing and market deployment activities between 1990 and 2012. The analysis reveals spatial lifecycle patterns with lower-than-expected first mover advantages in manufacturing and market activities and an earlier entry of firms from emerging economies in manufacturing and knowledge creation. We discuss implications of these findings for the competitive positions of companies in developed and emerging economies, derive new stylized hypotheses for industry lifecycle theories, and sketch policy approaches that are reflexive of global interdependencies in emerging cleantech industries.

(Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
Cleantech, Industry lifecycle, Patent analysis, Product lifecycle, Solar photovoltaics
in
Energy Policy
volume
101
pages
17 pages
publisher
Elsevier
external identifiers
  • scopus:85005950356
  • wos:000392768800039
ISSN
0301-4215
DOI
10.1016/j.enpol.2016.10.034
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
3d8b244e-9461-4174-937d-60632f4ddb7d
date added to LUP
2017-01-24 08:44:27
date last changed
2017-09-18 11:33:28
@article{3d8b244e-9461-4174-937d-60632f4ddb7d,
  abstract     = {<p>New industries develop in increasingly globalized networks, whose dynamics are not well understood by academia and policy making. Solar photovoltaics (PV) are a case in point for an industry that experienced several shifts in its spatial organization over a short period of time. A lively debate has recently emerged on whether the spatial dynamics in new cleantech sectors are in line with existing industry lifecycle models or whether globalization created new lifecycle patterns that are not fully explained in the literature. This paper addresses this question based on an extensive analysis of quantitative data in the solar PV sector. Comprehensive global databases containing 86,000 patents as well as manufacturing and sales records are used to analyze geographic shifts in the PV sector's innovation, manufacturing and market deployment activities between 1990 and 2012. The analysis reveals spatial lifecycle patterns with lower-than-expected first mover advantages in manufacturing and market activities and an earlier entry of firms from emerging economies in manufacturing and knowledge creation. We discuss implications of these findings for the competitive positions of companies in developed and emerging economies, derive new stylized hypotheses for industry lifecycle theories, and sketch policy approaches that are reflexive of global interdependencies in emerging cleantech industries.</p>},
  author       = {Binz, Christian and Tang, Tian and Huenteler, Joern},
  issn         = {0301-4215},
  keyword      = {Cleantech,Industry lifecycle,Patent analysis,Product lifecycle,Solar photovoltaics},
  language     = {eng},
  month        = {06},
  pages        = {386--402},
  publisher    = {Elsevier},
  series       = {Energy Policy},
  title        = {Spatial lifecycles of cleantech industries - The global development history of solar photovoltaics},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.enpol.2016.10.034},
  volume       = {101},
  year         = {2016},
}