Critical factors in health innovation in cities: from ivory tower to living lab
Health of the population in cities is regarded as an important precondition for the development of social capital and social participation in the frame of urban sustainability. The focus of this paper is on living labs for health innovations. Healthcare is under pressure as a consequence of the ageing population and fast increasing population with chronic conditions in a situation of shortage of financial resources. At the same time, the valorisation of health inventions, i.e., to bring them to market and widespread use is stumbled by many blocks. Living labs – be-it conceived as delimited environments for co-creation and development, like a hospital or residential area, or as local/regional platforms of open innovation – may offer various solutions in this situation. Drawing on the literature, in this paper, a framework is designed of important factors influencing the role of living labs as a solution in knowledge commercialisation and of critical factors as a policy tool. This framework is explored and tested using five case studies of living labs.
Keywords: knowledge valorisation, living labs, innovation, health, medical technology, critical factors, cities