Making Innovation Systems Work: Transformative Policies and Good Practices


Robust innovation systems play a vital role in promoting employment, economic growth and human development. Well-developed innovation systems also aid in good governance and policy formulation around the world. Yet, creating robust and well-developed innovation systems remains an elusive task for many economies. What are the key factors in creating such innovative systems? How to transform existing innovation systems through policy innovations and good practices? How to make innovations systems work across countries in different stages of economic development? Our executive program on “Making Innovation Systems Work: Transformative Policies and Good Practices” aims to provide participants with cutting-edge thinking about policy innovations and good practices in creating and sustaining innovations systems.

The program consists of a series of interconnected and interactive training sessions seminars on topics of regional and global interest, including the changing faces of innovation policy, social entrepreneurship and comparative perspectives from different world regions. Through exposure to cutting-edge insights from leading academics and thinkers in the field, evidence-based approaches to policy development, a practical orientation towards policy and practices, and attention to unconventional actors and institutions in shaping innovation systems, participants will develop an enhanced understanding of new policy approaches and their applicability across different policy sectors and regional contexts.

This one-of-a-kind program is jointly offered by Hong Kong University of Science and Technology and the University of Sussex. University of Sussex’s Science Policy Research Unit (SPRU) brings its unparalleled 50-year history in the field and combines it with the dynamism and academic rigor of science, technology and innovation policy.


The program is most suitable for those in government and industry, including the non-profit sector, who are seeking policies that respond to rapid social, political and technological change to address the challenges of economic growth, competitiveness and sustainable development.


  • Explore the importance of innovation systems and how they are changing

  • Understand the role of unconventional actors and linkages for innovation policy

  • Identify how social innovation can contribute to economic and social transformation

  • Examine practices from different world regions in order to inform technology policymaking and contextualise best practice

  • Identify strategies for strengthening science, technology and innovation advocacy and overcoming political and operational obstacles


Who Should Attend

The program is designed for senior executives and professionals in the government, non-profit and private sector, whether working at national or international levels. The program is well suited for senior civil servants across government agencies, as well as consultants and staff of international development agencies. Leaders from non-governmental organizations, think tanks, and corporations who are concerned with innovation and technology policy will also benefit from the program. Training in the natural sciences is not a requirement. Program participants typically possess a broad cross-section of backgrounds, and have experience working in a variety of fields including: finance, economic and development planning, infrastructure development, industry, trade, science and technology, information and communications, education, health, environment, and regional development.



  • The Changing Faces of Innovation for Economic Growth, Global Competitiveness and Sustainable Development

  • Innovation Systems and Transformative Change

  • The Role of Unconventional Innovation Actors

  • Field visit to Explore Innovation Policy in Practice

  • Innovation Policy in Mainland China, Hong Kong, Singapore and Asian economies

  • US and European innovation policy approaches

  • Social and Grassroots Innovation and Entrepreneurship

  • Overcoming Political and Operational Obstacles


Program Faculty

  • Dr. Adrian ELY, University of Sussex (Lead Faculty)

  • Prof Naubahar SHARIF, HKUST (Lead Faculty)

  • Prof Joanna CHATAWAY, University of Sussex

  • Prof Can HUANG, Zhejiang University

  • Prof Kira MATUS, HKUST

  • Prof Xun WU, HKUST


Making Innovation Systems Work: Transformative Policies and Good Practices
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HKUST Leadership and Public Policy Programs
Event Date (for display)
2018 Jun 4 - 8
HKUST Clear Water Bay Campus
Additional Field (if any)
The lecture is free and open to all. Seating is on a first come, first served basis.
Light refreshments will be served from xx:xx:xx to xx:xx:xx
09:00 - 17:00
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