In recent writing on sociotechnical transitions theory communities are mostly conceived of as being local and place-based (“grassroots”). In this paper the implications for sociotechnical transitions theory of having multiple communities operating at different geographical scales, and with different objectives, are examined through a case study of low-carbon innovation in forests. The focus of analysis is the communities promoting sociotechnical innovations in the measurement of forest carbon. Innovation is being driven by the international United Nations climate policy initiative “Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation” (REDD+). The rise of REDD+ policy has prompted a flurry of activity in related scientific research, especially in the field of remote sensing. But other types of community are also actively positioning themselves as experts in forest carbon measurement: there are multiple communities at work, each with varying claims to innovation and expertise, from local (place-based) forest communities to international communities of foresters and forest ecologists. Recognition of the multiple communities operating within sociotechnical systems usefully draws our attention to the politics of innovation.
|Early online date||30 Apr 2014|
|Publication status||Published - 1 Nov 2015|
- multi-level perspective
- innovation niche
- epistemic community