Go to main navigation Navigation menu Skip navigation Home page Search

Mission-driven Innovation Environments – How Can They be Evaluated?

Mission driven environments are being implemented globally, often aiming to solve so called ‘wicked problems’ (Mazzucato, 2018; Newman & Head, 2017). This project is a feasibility study that will develop a model for how 5 Swedish mission driven environments (cases) within healthcare, here referred to as ‘innovation milieus’, can be evaluated. The purpose of the project is to develop knowledge about whether mission driven forms of funding intervention are successful and to identify key lessons about important success factors for mission driven innovation environments beyond the 5 cases studied.

The project will generate:

  • Indicators for the follow-up of the 5 vision driven environments’ program principles
  • Approaches to analyze the development of the indicators over time
  • Tools for evaluating the indicators' connections to the desired outcomes (innovation and innovative capacity)
  • The model will also contribute to continuous learning within the evaluated environments, e. function as a 'feedback mechanism' where lessons from the implementation of the working principles in the different environments are communicated in dialogue with the participating environments.

The envisioned evaluation includes two steps. We are currently working on the first step, drawing on previous work on mission-driven evaluation in other countries.

Step 1: Development of a model for evaluating innovation environments.

Step 2: Evaluation of the indicators' connections to the desired outcomes (innovation and

innovative capacity) - part of this analysis can be performed in step 1.

Step 1 is carried out via literature studies, interviews with experts in the EU, and comparisons with similar evaluation projects that are ongoing in other European countries, as well as primary data from the five innovation environments and actors in their vicinity.

An international group of senior advisors also participate. Please reach out for more information!

Selected references

Arnold, E. (2004). Evaluating research and innovation policy: a systems world needs systems evaluations. Research Evaluation, 13(1), 3-17. 


Georghiou, L. (1998). Issues in the evaluation of innovation and technology policy. Evaluation, 4(1), 37-51. 


European Commission (EC). (2011) Horizon 2020—The Framework Programme for Research and Innovation—Communication from the Commission. COM/2011/0808 final. European Commission: Brussels. 


Mazzucato, M. (2018). Mission-oriented innovation policies: challenges and opportunities. Industrial and Corporate Change, 27(5), 803-815. 


Nelson, R. R. (1974). Intellectualizing About the Moon-Ghetto Metaphor: the Current Malaise of Rational Analysis of Social Problems, Policy Sciences, 5: 375–414. 


Newman, J., & Head, B. W. (2017). Wicked tendencies in policy problems: Rethinking social and technical problems. Policy and Society, 36(3), 414-429. 


Tillväxtanalys. (2018). Förslag till förbättrad utvärdering av näringspolitiska insatser. PM 2018:13. Östersund: Tillväxtanalys. 


Tillväxtanalys. (2021). Styrning och implementering av innovationspolitik genom samverkan PM 2021:03. Östersund: Tillväxtanalys. 


Wanzenböck, I., Wesseling, J. H., Frenken, K., Hekkert, M. P., & Weber, K. M. (2020). A framework for mission-oriented innovation policy: Alternative pathways through the problem–solution space. Science and Public Policy, 47(4), 474-489.