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Midlife Creativity and Identity: Life into Art
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78754-333-1

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Article
Publication date: 11 September 2017

Ian Douglas Miles

413

Abstract

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foresight, vol. 19 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-6689

Article
Publication date: 1 August 2002

Mark Harvey, Andrew McMeekin and Ian Miles

This essay examines the issues that the ongoing revolution in biosciences and biotechnology pose to social science. A convenient frame for examining these issues is the framework…

Abstract

This essay examines the issues that the ongoing revolution in biosciences and biotechnology pose to social science. A convenient frame for examining these issues is the framework of “thematic priorities” established by the British funding agency for social science, the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC). These “thematic priorities” are used to identify major challenges and opportunities that currently confront social research. Though not constructed as part of a futures exercise, this framework proved useful for organising the issues that were generated from literature review and brainstorming, provided a stimulus to identify new issues, and was a useful filter for presenting results to the ESRC, which sponsored the study. This range of issues does not just call for interaction between natural and social scientists: there is also need for the sharing of knowledge and perspectives across diverse fields of social science. In order to help inform future research priorities, we need to move beyond the perspectives of single disciplines, and make sure that we do not simply emphasise those areas where social scientists have already been actively engaged. The study concludes clearly that there is a huge range of vital questions that social science needs to address if we are to understand, let alone bring more social intelligence to bear on shaping, the scientific and technological revolutions that are under way, and their broader social implications.

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Foresight, vol. 4 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-6689

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 August 2002

Clement Bezold and Ian Miles

New technologies are posing new challenges to social science. Their very novelty also challenges the established methods that social research institutions have used to define…

299

Abstract

New technologies are posing new challenges to social science. Their very novelty also challenges the established methods that social research institutions have used to define their priorities. The UK’s Economic and Social research Council (ESRC) confronted these challenges, in part, by commissioning a futures study. It engaged the Institute for Alternative Futures (IAF) and the Centre for Research on Innovation and Competition (CRIC), to develop quickly a process for informing the choice of social science research priorities related to genomics. Four major reports were developed as background inputs to a scenario workshop process. As well as outlining a set of scenarios for the development of the genomics field, reports covered genomic applications, forecasts for drivers shaping genomics, and how the ESRC’s “thematic priorities” might relate to developments in genomics in the coming years. With this input and using advanced “groupware”, the scenario workshop identified five priority areas focused on how research should be conducted and 11 priority topics for what research is needed.

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Foresight, vol. 4 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-6689

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 12 September 2016

Joe Ravetz and Ian Douglas Miles

This paper aims to review the challenges of urban foresight via an analytical method: apply this to the city demonstrations on the UK Foresight Future of Cities: and explore the…

1368

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to review the challenges of urban foresight via an analytical method: apply this to the city demonstrations on the UK Foresight Future of Cities: and explore the implications for ways forward.

Design/methodology/approach

The methodology is based on the principles of co-evolutionary complex systems, a newly developed toolkit of “synergistic mapping and design”, and its application in a “synergy foresight” method.

Findings

The UK Foresight Future of Cities is work in progress, but some early lessons are emerging – the need for transparency in foresight method – and the wider context of strategic policy intelligence.

Practical implications

The paper has practical recommendations, and a set of propositions, (under active discussion in 2015), which are based on the analysis.

Originality/value

The paper aims to demonstrate an application of “synergy foresight” with wide benefits for cities and the communities within them.

Article
Publication date: 13 August 2019

Lisa A. Pace and Ian Miles

Firms need to develop absorptive capacities to effectively source and exploit knowledge relevant to environmental behaviour for their own innovation activity. Business-to-business…

Abstract

Purpose

Firms need to develop absorptive capacities to effectively source and exploit knowledge relevant to environmental behaviour for their own innovation activity. Business-to-business interactions can represent a significant route through which knowledge and resources about environmental innovations are transferred along the supply chain. The purpose of this paper is to explore how firms exploit business partnerships in order to build capacity for environmental innovation. In order to do so, it investigates two elements of B2B interactions – partner alignment and compatibility – and their influence on absorptive capacity-building.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper is based on a qualitative interview study of knowledge intensive business services (KIBS) operating in the environmental goods and services sector and their clients involved in adopting environmental innovations. Matched pairs of engineering consulting firms and their clients – tourism accommodation establishments – were selected as a sampling frame in order to study the influence of partner alignment and compatibility on the exchange of environmentally relevant knowledge and competencies.

Findings

The findings show that the synergistic attributes of business partners influence absorptive capacity-building and give rise to different patterns of interaction of KIBS with their client. The B2B interactions investigated are characterised by alignment along multiple objectives about the relevance of environmental behaviour. Furthermore, the compatibility of the partners’ competences is a key determinant of environmental innovation outcome.

Practical implications

The study highlights the role of managers in identifying and selecting those business partnerships that accrue greater potential benefit for accessing resources and competencies for eco-innovation.

Originality/value

The study contributes to the literature on absorptive capacity and innovation by demonstrating how B2B interactions – in this study, the interaction of KIBS with their clients – influence the capacity of firms to adopt environmental innovations which is an area of study that deserves further attention.

Details

European Journal of Innovation Management, vol. 23 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1460-1060

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 21 March 2019

Ian Douglas Miles, Veronika Belousova and Nikolay Chichkanov

The literature on knowledge-intensive business services (KIBS) shows them to be major innovators; this is confirmed with recent data, which the authors use to examine the various…

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Abstract

Purpose

The literature on knowledge-intensive business services (KIBS) shows them to be major innovators; this is confirmed with recent data, which the authors use to examine the various types of innovation that KIBS undertake. The implications for employment and work in highly innovative industries are important topics for analysis, not least because we are in a period where dramatic claims are being made as to the implications of new technologies for professional occupations. Thus, this paper aims to address major debates and conclusions concerning innovation patterns in KIBS and the evolving structures of professional and other work in these industries.

Design/methodology/approach

This essay combines literature review with presentation and discussion of statistics that throw light on the patterns of innovation that characterise KIBS. The authors also consider data that concern trends in the organisation of work in these industries; while the focus is mainly on KIBS firms, they also pay some attention to KIBS-like work in other sectors. Even though KIBS are distinctive industries in modern economies, these analyses can be related to more general studies of, and forecasts about, changes in work organisation.

Findings

The authors show that innovation patterns and employment structures vary substantially across different types of KIBS, with the distinction between technological, professional and creative KIBS proving to be useful for capturing these differences. The authors are also able to demonstrate important long- and medium-term trends in the structure and activities of the KIBS industries. In particular, data clearly demonstrate the increasing share of professional as against associate and clerical workers in most KIBS. Evidence also suggests that polarisation trends across the economy are mirrored, and in some cases amplified, in KIBS. The future prospects for employment in KIBS, and for professional work in particular, are seen to involve multiple factors, which together may bring about substantial change.

Research limitations/implications

The study involves literature review and industry-level statistical analysis. Future work would benefit from firm-level analysis and validation and explication of results via consultation with practitioners and users of KIBS. Some puzzling variations across countries and sectors will need to be explored with national and sectoral experts.

Practical implications

Research into KIBS activities, and their future, should make more use of the extensive statistics on employment and other structural features of the industries that have become available in recent years. KIBS firms and practitioners will need to take account of the forces for change that are liable to restructure their activities.

Originality/value

The literature on KIBS has been concentrated on a rather narrow range of issues, while analysis of the current contributions and future development of the industries requires attention to a wider range of topics. This paper suggests how these topics may be investigated and their implications explored and presents results of enquiries along these lines.

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foresight, vol. 21 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-6689

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 12 March 2018

Ian Douglas Miles, Veronika Belousova and Nikolay Chichkanov

The substantial growth in literature on knowledge-intensive business services (KIBSs) has thrown light on their contributions to innovation and innovation systems. This paper is…

1371

Abstract

Purpose

The substantial growth in literature on knowledge-intensive business services (KIBSs) has thrown light on their contributions to innovation and innovation systems. This paper is the first of a set that examines major debates and conclusions to have emerged from this growing body of evidence.

Design/methodology/approach

This is a review essay, which also presents relevant statistics. It addresses definitional issues and controversies, and sets out basic trends and characteristics of the KIBS industries. The focus is mainly on KIBS firms, though the production of similar services in other types of organisation is also considered.

Findings

Many of the conclusions of an earlier (2005) review in this journal remain valid, though difficulties in capturing these activities in official statistics mean that there are many issues that demand closer inspection. Understanding the role and future prospects of KIBS will also require looking beyond the literature that focuses just on KIBS industries.

Research limitations/implications

This study involves literature review and statistical analysis. Future work would benefit from involvement of practitioners and users of KIBS.

Practical implications

More explicit consideration of KIBS in statistical frameworks is still required, and novel approaches to data conceptualisation and production should be explored.

Originality/value

The growing literature on KIBS, and its implications for understanding the roles and future development of the firms and their relationships to innovation systems, requires systematic analysis. Available statistics have been brought together, and this paper also reflects critically on the trajectories of research on these topics.

Details

foresight, vol. 20 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-6689

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 5 March 2021

Ian Douglas Miles, Veronika Belousova, Nikolay Chichkanov and Zhaklin Krayushkina

Knowledge-intensive business services (KIBS) firms focus on applying their expert knowledge to help solve the business problems of their clients: these clients confronted major…

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Abstract

Purpose

Knowledge-intensive business services (KIBS) firms focus on applying their expert knowledge to help solve the business problems of their clients: these clients confronted major new problems due to the COVID-19 pandemic and policy measures such as social distancing and travel restrictions, designed to reduce the rapid spread of the illness. Many KIBS were reliant upon extensive contact with clients, and within teams working on projects; they found their practices disrupted. This study aims to examine how KIBS are evolving to cope with both the sets of changes: those in their own operations, and those involving the emerging business problems of clients.

Design/methodology/approach

The main data sources are material contained in websites of a sample of leading firms in a range of KIBS sectors, and in media reports and other documentation of efforts to confront the pandemic.

Findings

The results indicate considerable efforts in KIBS to address emerging client problems, as well as to adapt their own practices. Their substantial role in confronting the pandemic and associated business difficulties has implications for future crises. KIBS are likely to be important players in shaping responses not only to future pandemics but also to the looming climate crisis.

Originality/value

The study demonstrates the growing role of KIBS and their “second knowledge infrastructure” in modern economies, exemplified by their role in the context of an emerging crisis.

Details

foresight, vol. 23 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-6689

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 May 1966

Ian Chichester‐Miles

AT the present time, with preparations in hand for the advent of the supersonic transport aircraft, it is a sobering thought that the fastest overall journey speed between the…

Abstract

AT the present time, with preparations in hand for the advent of the supersonic transport aircraft, it is a sobering thought that the fastest overall journey speed between the centres of London and Paris is of the order of 80 m.p.h. Despite the relatively high standard of comfort offered by the modern airliner over short stages its main attraction—speed—is being rivalled by the high speed train and its greatest competition is still the motor car.

Details

Aircraft Engineering and Aerospace Technology, vol. 38 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0002-2667

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