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In laboratorio veritas: economic experiments to measure wine consumer preferences. 

Riccardo Vecchio (University of Napoli Federico II)

06 mars 2022

  The vast majority of available studies on wine preferences have investigated consumer behaviour via stated preferences; thus incorporating hypothetical bias. In addition, marketing scholars generally tend to concentrate singularly on the influence on preferences of core attributes of wine (as brand, origin, sensory characteristics), while not deeply analysing the complex relationships among these factors. I will present and discuss the advantages (and the limits) of investigating wine consumer preferences applying experimental economics mechanisms combined with hedonic evaluations. An overview of several recent studies will build the ground (hopefully) for a lively debate.

Riccardo Vecchio (MSc, PhD) is Associate Professor in Agricultural and Resource Economics at the University of Naples Federico II (Italy), Department of Agricultural Sciences. Riccardo is currently adjunct professor at KEDGE Business School in Bordeaux (France). His research activities are currently focused on consumer attitudes and behaviour towards wine and food product attributes. In particular, he applies economic and behavioral experiments to analyze consumer food preferences. He has participated in over 20 national and international research projects. To date, Riccardo has published 85 peer-reviewed scientific papers, with over 2060 citations and an h-index of 23 (Scopus database). According to the updated science-wide author databases of standardized citation indicators, in the years 2019 and 2020, Riccardo stands among the 100.000 most productive scholars in the world (https://data.mendeley.com/datasets/btchxktzyw/2).

The fairytale of technological spillovers – an alternative view on technological knowledge 

Andreas Pyka 

18 mai 2022 – University of Hohenheim in Stuttgart, Germany 

Since Kenneth Arrow has introduced the idea of new technological knowledge as a public good in 1962, economists refer to the problem of spillover effects and their distorting effects on the incentives to invest in innovation. In industrial economics the incentive reducing effects of technological spillovers are widely considered to be responsible for a sub-optimal investment in research and development.  

In growth economics, however, technological spillovers are considered as idea creating effects, which allow to overcome the trap of diminishing growth rates characteristic for growth models in the Solow fashion. In the so-called new growth theory, mutual exploitation of knowledge is considered to responsible for synergetic effects which explain long run positive growth rates.  

This contradiction cannot be resolved within the mainstream framework but requires a new perspective on technological knowledge, which is jointly created and diffused in complex innovation networks. To analyze knowledge dynamics, agent-based models offer an alternative which allows new insights in line with modern approaches in innovation policies, where – since at least two decades – innovation clusters, knowledge transfer and pre-competitive cooperation have replaced incentive-oriented innovation policies, which focus single sided on the reparation of assumed market failures because of supposed public good features of new knowledge. 

Andreas Pyka holds the chair for Innovation Economics at the University of Hohenheim (Germany) since 2009. He is one of the world best specialist of complexity and innovation economics and evolutionary economics. 

After having worked on the question of evolutionary growth models, he became interested in agent-based models and the role of knowledge in the formation of networks. For the past few years, he has been working in issues related to the ecological transition, and more particularly in the bioeconomy.

Fit for social innovation? Policy mix reflections for EU energy and climate policy making

Karoline Rogge, 12/04/22


Achieving climate-neutrality by mid-century and its intermediary reduction targets for 2030, notably the EU’s greenhouse gas emissions reduction of 55% by 2030, requires a transformation of our systems of production and consumption. In essence, such transformations are socio-technical change processes that require a combination of technological and social innovation along the way. While it is widely acknowledged that ambitious climate policy mixes are needed to accelerate such transition processes, research and practise have largely focused on their importance for spurring technological innovation. In this presentation, which is based on an joint output with SONNET colleagues, I argue that energy and climate policy making should pay more attention to social innovation as much needed puzzle piece for successful decarbonisation. I illustrate this point by discussing the extent to which the EU’s proposed Fit for 55 package is already considering social innovation in energy. After highlighting the diversity of social innovation in energy and introducing policy mix thinking in the context of social innovation in energy, I illustrate how existing policy mixes matter for three innovation types: renewable energy cooperatives, participatory incubation and experimentation, and local electricity exchange. Based on these insights and discussions from a policy dialogue event I will present twelve practical action points of how to better consider social innovation in energy and climate policy making in the EU and beyond, thereby hopefully stimulating a broader discourse on the dual need for social and technological innovation for reaching climate-neutrality.

This presentation is based on joint work of Karoline Rogge, Maria Stadler, Tessa de Geus, Sabine Hielscher, Julia Wittmayer, Annalena Broich, Adrienne Kotler, Niklas Mischkowski, Agata Stasik, Adélie Ranville and Anne-Lorène Vernay. The research was conducted within the SONNET project (www.sonnet-energy.eu) which has received

funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 837498.

Economic Growth, Structural Change and Transformation:
What’s important now? 

Andreas Pyka 

23/03/2022 – University of Hohenheim in Stuttgart, Germany 

Economics today is under sever critique because of the limited abilities to provide answers concerning long term economic development. Because of the prevailing quantitative orientation and the focus on substitution, mainstream economic theory is not capable to include qualitative developments like structural change and transformation.  

Modern evolutionary innovation economics offers an alternative and places central qualitative change triggered in complex innovation systems. However, also modern evolutionary innovation economics falls short when it comes to transformative change encompassing the whole economic systems including the interaction between supply and demand sides.  

The current developments in the knowledge-based bioeconomy are an example par excellence for a comprehensive transformation which has the power not only to overcome the lock-in into fossil-based technologies but to contribute substantially to new patterns of production and consumption and to achieve higher degrees of sustainability.  

In order to understand better this crucial transformation processes and to derive adequate policy recommendations, innovation economics needs to address the ability of innovation systems to pass tipping points in order to fundamentally change the patterns of production and consumption, before the Earth climate system reaches its tipping point which would go hand in hand with devastating and irreversible effects. 

Prospering without growth Science, Technology and Innovation in a post-growth era”

 Mario Pansera, 27/01/22

 The feasibility and desirability of endless economic growth is being increasingly questioned by scholars and activists. While envisioning alternative economic models is key to assure the sustainability and wellbeing of present and future generations, few studies have analysed what might be the role of ‘innovation’ in a post-growth era. Innovating has become an imperative for the survival and expansion of any form of organisation. But this ‘innovate or die mania’ underpins assumptions – such as technological determinism and productivism – that neglect the socially constructed character of technological development, its politics and its capacity to enable (or disable) just and equitable societies. In this seminar we posit that untangling innovation from growth is key to imagine a postgrowth era. We show how alternative bottom up initiatives, promoted by a variety of different organizational forms, have challenged mainstream ideas about innovation and growth. These experiments provide a glimpse about what ‘innovation without growth’ could mean in terms of technology and social organization. We conclude by proposing new paths in research aimed at exploring under which conditions post-growth-oriented organizations can flourish and diffuse. 

In this event, it is our honor to host Dr. Mario Pansera, Distinguished Researcher by the Universida de Vigo and affiliated Researcher at the Autonoma University of Barcelona. Mario is Director of the UVigo Post-Growth Innovation Lab, and his work focuses on Responsible Research and Innovation. He will present his research on Innovation for postgrowth.


May 20th 2021. 10am-12pm, online seminar

  • In French and online (meeting ID: 880 1804 5612 – Password: 879029)
  • “Redefining agriculture for the Anthropocene era”

    How will we eat in the future and who will produce our food?

    This question may seem preposterous for many Westerners who have access to a huge variety of food at moderate prices. This ease of access that we have enjoyed for 50 years is under threat from a somewhat considerable event: the Anthropocene. We have entered a new geological era which is greatly destabilising agricultural activities and forcing us to fundamentally reinvent the way our food systems work, from the production of raw materials to their consumption.

    Bertrand Valiorgue’s work provides a unique analytical framework which helps us to understand why the agricultural trajectory that we are currently pursuing is entirely unsuitable for the very specific circumstances of the Anthropocene. Drawing on work from neo-institutional economics and the common goods theory, he provides avenues for reflection that question the foundations of agriculture. He demonstrates that if it is regenerative, agriculture can be one of the solutions, and not one of the problems, of the Anthropocene era. This bifurcation of our agricultural model is required for all of French society, and its need is becoming more evident every day. Otherwise, the risk of agriculture completely disappearing is anything but negligible.

B. Valiorgue (Clermont Auvergne University)

April 8th 2021 seminar

  • In English and online (meeting ID: 860 0745 1801; password: 053839)

  • “Agri-food system transformation: reflections on some recent trends”
    Recently, there is a lot of interest in agri-food system transformation, for example spurred by the 2021 UN Food Systems Summit. This agri-food system transformation has different drivers, different possible transition pathways towards future agri-food systems, of which some are still tentative while others are becoming already more visible and tangible. In this talk I will reflect on some recent work I have been involved in, touching on topics such as the influence of digitalization and other novel technologies, the idea of mission-orientation in innovation for food systems-transformation, and the role that intermediary structures can play in fostering and facilitating this transition in just and responsible ways.

Laurens Klerkx is Professor Agrifood Innovation and Transition at the Knowledge, Technology and Innovation Group of Wageningen University, The Netherlands, of which he has been part since 2002. He obtained his PhD from the same university and is an internationally recognized expert in the field of agricultural innovation studies, doing social science research on various topics such as institutional change in research and advisory organizations, roles and positions of organizations that broker multi-stakeholder networks for innovation, digital agriculture innovation, transformative innovation in agri-food and innovation system development. Throughout his career, Laurens has (co-)authored and published more than 0 articles in international peer reviewed journals. His work informs policy makers, through contributions to policy oriented publications and direct engagement through invited presentations with organizations like the World Bank, the European Commission, the Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations (FAO), the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), and the United Nations Commission for Trade and Development (UNCTAD).

March 4th 2021 seminar

  • “Types of agricultural methanation in the Champagne-Ardenne region: between regional and industrial dynamics”

    Agricultural methanation is following a developmental pathway linked to the issue of its integration into three distinct value chains: biomass, energy and waste treatment. This triple integration has led to a wide variety of adoption methods for the technology to produce biogas, which is creating conflict and numerous compromise solutions between the various stakeholders within the three value chains. The Champagne-Ardenne region has a wide variety of development methods for agricultural methanation, which makes it unique compared with other parts of France. After introducing the analytical framework based on upgrading – a concept resulting from the Global Value Chain approach – to study the innovation process of methanation, we propose a typology of Champagne-Ardenne plants as well as keys to understanding which explain the reasons for this diversity.

P. Grouiez (University of Paris)



January 31st 2020 seminar

  • “A comprehensive history of the bioeconomy”

    Our analysis offers a long-term reading of the transformations that agriculture has undergone, based on a triple temporal perspective: a “general economy” (Bataille) which places the history of human societies in that of nature and life, defined here as the appropriation of the flow of energy received by the earth; the socio-metabolic regimes marked by a radical break at the end of the eighteenth century when Europe – and then gradually the whole of humanity – came to depend more and more on the resources drawn from the subsoil for their energy and supply of materials; and finally the hegemonic patterns that have come and gone throughout the history of capitalism. The United Kingdom’s hegemony led to an international division of labour in which the entire world was mobilised to supply Euro-centric global biomass markets, whereas the hegemony of the United States has resulted in a radical upheaval in the role of agriculture in social metabolism. While the chemical industry reproduces synthetic products, agriculture specialises in the supply of food and, at the same time, becomes a consumer of energy and no longer a supplier, as it had always been throughout human history.

    For the past three decades, these methods for the production and use of agricultural products have been disputed. The “bioeconomic project” is part of this dispute and proposes to go the other way, replacing fossil fuels with agricultural products in the production of various synthetic items. The chemical industry therefore sees biomass as a new source of raw materials on a par with coal and petroleum, with the risk of seeing the same mining approach transposed there.

G. Allaire (INRAE) and B. Daviron (CIRAD) – joint seminar between the Chair in Industrial Bioeconomy and URCA’s REGARDS Laboratory


January 22nd 2019 seminar

  • Taking a broad view of development. Proposing a conceptual and methodological framework for development from the case of synthetic biology

Benjamin Raimbault, Cermes3

February 15th 2019 seminar

  • Innovation and territory

Didier Chabaud, IAE Paris – Sorbonne Business School

March 13th 2019 seminar

  • The economic analysis of ecosystem services

Harold Levrel, Agro Paris Tech

June 14th 2019 seminar

  • Productivity or transformation towards sustainability

Andreas Pyka, Université d’Hohenheim, head of the Chair for Innovation Economics


June 8th 2018 seminar

  • What impact do agricultural cooperatives have? An economic, social and environmental assessment

Damien Rousselière (Université d’Angers, Agrocampus Ouest)

March 23rd 2018 seminar

  • A system perspective on the role of pilot and demonstration plants in the transition to a bioeconomy: a synthesis and implications for future research

Hans Hellsmark (Chalmers University)

January 19th 2018 seminar

  • Biorefineries Models and Policy

James Philp (OECD)

November 15th 2017 seminar

  • Decision-making support in the upstream stages of a biorefinery project supported by multi-objective optimisation.
  • Integration of sustainability dimensions for the development of bio-sourced sectors at a regional level: scenario modelling based on system dynamics.

Mauricio Camargo, University Professor, Director of International Action, ENSGSI (National School of Industrial Systems Engineering, Nancy), ERPI Laboratory (Research Team on Innovation Processes)

  • “Living lab” approaches: the example of the LF2L platform (http://www.lf2l.fr/) as a player in regional development.

Laure Morel, University Professor, ENSGI, Director of the ERPI Laboratory