UCL Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose


Missions: A new framework

Missions are the lens through which IIPP sees the world, putting missions at the heart of innovation and growth policy globally is vital. Explore our framework here.

A new framework

IIPP is exploring how a new framework could better envision, justify, measure and assess public investments, working within an eco-system of public, private and third sector actors across the innovation chain. It focuses on the role of the state as shaping and creating markets, not only fixing them – and enables the development of economic policy to be informed by a broader theoretical underpinning. It addresses four key questions or essential pillars, which have been labelled the ROAR framework:

  • ROUTES. How to overcome the fear of ‘picking winners’, focusing the question not on whether to ‘pick’ but on how to make strategic choices around societal and technological missions, which can ‘tilt’ the playing field around transformative change across many sectors. This pillar is about 'directionality'.
  • ORGANISATIONAL CAPACITY. How to build the type of public sector institutions that welcome the fundamental uncertainty—and hence risk-taking—inherent in the innovation process—becoming learning institutions. This pillar is about viewing ‘policy as process’ and building learning organizations to engage in that process.
  • ASSESSMENT. How to develop new tools to measure and assess the dynamic impact of different types of public policies that aim to create markets not only fix them. This pillar is about building a dynamic approach to the assessment of policies to replace, or at times complement, the more static cost-benefit approaches.
  • RISKS AND REWARDS. How to develop mechanisms so that the public and private sectors share the risks and also the rewards. This pillar is about thinking of ways to allow smart, innovation-led growth to also be inclusive growth.