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New Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose

Tackling the grand challenges of the 21st century requires the public, private and third sectors to work together to drive innovation. In this endeavor, the public sector cannot be limited to fixing market failures and 'de-risking' business. It needs to actively co-create and shape the markets of the future, and welcome the underlying process of experimentation and exploration. This requires building new forms of competencies and adaptive dynamic capabilities inside public institutions, which are oriented towards producing public value.  

IIPP is a new UCL institute providing radical thinking about public policy driven by public purpose. We will offer a new lens through which to approach these grand challenges.

Founded and directed by Mariana Mazzucato, Professor in the Economics of Innovation and Public Value, and author of the highly acclaimed book The Entrepreneurial State, the Institute is in its start-up phase and will have its launch event in autumn 2017. Please check back for news and updates.

Our start-up team includes an exciting group of internationally renowned scholars, who will help strategically steer IIPP in its early foundation. Carlota Perez, has joined as Honorary Professor, helping to lead our work on the relationship between finance, technology and long-term sustainable growth. Rainer Kattel, has joined as Visiting Professor, to help lead our work on governance of innovation inside public institutions.

Our Advisory Board includes international thought leaders with practical experience in different types of organisations (public, private, third sector) to direct innovation--technological, organisational, social and institutional--in ways that produce public value.  

Research Fellows will be leading our key research streams in areas that include: rethinking health innovation innovation, green economy for sustainable development, space economy partnerships, mission-oriented innovation policy, public sector innovation governance, and patient finance.  

Rethinking public purpose to generate public value

Through our research, we aim to reinvigorate the concept of public value in economics and develop new insights into the role of organisations with public purpose missions. In Autumn 2017 we will launch a seminar series focussed on debating the definition of public value from different disciplinary perspectives, and organise a series of provocation papers that will stimulate discussions around these themes. Our Innovators in Residence will bring a practical dimension to these debates and provocations.  

From fixing markets to co-creating and shaping markets

Our research will challenge the economic orthodoxy that limits policy-making to the correction of market failures.

We will develop a market-making and market-shaping framework, including new methodological tools and data, in which value is understood to be co-created by different actors in the public, private and third sectors.

A new vocabulary

Our work will inform an alternative narrative about the policy-making process. We will use a lexicon that is less focused on de-risking, mending and levelling. Instead, we will build a new vocabulary around capacity building, exploration, learning, strategic deliberation and dynamic assessment.

Mission-oriented policies

We will work closely with global policy-makers to understand how conceptions of public purpose can be used to help achieve societal and technological goals. In particular, we will explore how ‘mission-oriented’ innovation policies can tackle grand challenges from climate change to the care needed for ageing populations.

From industrial strategy to a green transformation

Our ambitious agenda aims to inform public policy in a number of areas including industrial and innovation policy; innovations in public services including health and social care; green innovation and sustainable development.


For more information, please download our brochure.

PDF iconFor more information, please download our brochure.

Contact us

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