1st Edition

The Dark Side of Innovation

    124 Pages
    by Routledge

    124 Pages
    by Routledge

    This book is a reaction to popular assumptions that innovation is always a force for good. While the popular press and politicians often take the view that "the more innovation, the better", the chapters in this edited volume reflect on the harmful effects of innovation on society and the environment.

    The book begins with a broad discussion of the dark side of innovation, followed by contributions by various experts in the area. It is a critical reply to the innovation optimists, complementing the list of indicators that show steady human progress with a list of indicators that show sustained deterioration (largely due to innovation). The volume outlines some relevant dimensions of harmful innovation, before distinguishing between the types of harm brought on by innovation.

    The various contributed chapters focus on the following themes: a bibliometric analysis of the scientific literature on the harmful consequences of innovation; harmful side-effects from solar photovoltaic waste; harmful consequences of process innovations on working practices in areas such as accountancy; the difficulties of transferring innovations from research to practice in clinical healthcare; and the harmful consequences of social innovations.

    The chapters in this book were originally published as a special issue of the journal Industry and Innovation.

    1. The dark side of innovation 

    Alex Coad, Paul Nightingale, Jack Stilgoe and Antonio Vezzani 

    2. The noxious consequences of innovation: what do we know? 

    Gianluca Biggi and Elisa Giuliani 

    3. The dark side of the sun: solar e-waste and environmental upgrading in the off-grid solar PV value chain 

    Ulrich Elmer Hansen, Ivan Nygaard and Mirko Dal Maso 

    4. The dark side of the industrialisation of accountancy: innovation, commoditization, colonization and competitiveness 

    Emma C. Gardner and John R. Bryson 

    5. The grey zones of technological innovation: negative unintended consequences as a counterbalance to novelty 

    Maureen McKelvey and Rögnvaldur J. Saemundsson 

    6. Exposing three dark sides of social innovation through critical perspectives on resilience 

    Martin Fougère and Eija Meriläinen 


    Alex Coad is Professor at Waseda Business School (Tokyo, Japan) and is an editor of the journals Research Policy and Small Business Economics.

    Paul Nightingale is Professor at SPRU at the University of Sussex, UK, and is an editor of the journal Research Policy.

    Jack Stilgoe is Associate Professor in Science and Technology Studies at University College London, UK, where he researches the governance of emerging technologies.

    Antonio Vezzani is Associate Professor at the Department of Economics at Roma Tre University (Italy), having previously served as an economist at the European Commission.