Article

The Car Industry and the Blow-out of the Hydrogen Hype

Authors:
  • Sjoerd Bakker Research & Consultancy
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Abstract

The hydrogen hype of the last decade has passed and it is now seemingly substituted by the electric vehicle hype. A technological hype can have both positive as well as negative consequences. On the one hand it attracts sponsors for technology development but on the other hand the high expectations might result in disappointment and subsequent withdrawal of the sponsors. In this paper I ask the question to what extent the car industry has created the hype and how it has done so. The industry's role is studied through their prototyping activities and accompanying statements on market entry. I conclude that the car industry has indeed inflated the hype, especially through its public statements on market release after the turn of the millennium. Furthermore, it can be concluded that the industry has shown a double repertoire of both highly optimistic and more modest statements. It is possible that statements are used deliberately to serve the industry's interests whenever needed. Without neglecting the positive influence of technological hype on public policy and private funding for R&D efforts, more modest promises could serve the development of sustainable mobility better. For policy makers the challenge is to remain open to different options instead of following hypes and disappointments as they come and go.

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... Previous studies highlighted how automakers respond to these stimuli. In an aggregated level, the technological variety in the sector seems to be increasing over time (Frenken et al., 2004;Oltra and Saint Jean, 2009b), although some argue that most automakers successively and collectively shifted their R&D activities towards specific green technologies (for example, from electric vehicles to fuel cells) in a way that these technologies would 'compete' with each other and the outcome would be the dominance of one technology over the others Bakker, 2010b;Penna & Geels, 2015;van den Hoed, 2005). Finally, analyzes of automakers prototyping activities seems to indicate that some automakers are specializing in distinct green technologies: "From a firm-level perspective, some incumbents focused on specific technologies e.g., Nissan with EV [electric vehicles] and Toyota with HEV [hybrid-electric vehicles]" (Sierzchula et al., 2012, p. 219). ...
... From this point of view, there is technologies would 'compete' with each other and the outcome is presumably the dominance of one technology over the others through successive transitions based on the level of technologic complexity (Bakker, 2010b;Chanaron & Teske, 2007;Hoed & Vergragt, 2006;Pilkington, 2004). As an example, some authors believe in multiple transitions from ICE to EV led by hybrid vehicles as intermediate solution, and then followed by full battery electric vehicles (Brown et al., 2010;Steenhof & McInnis, 2008). ...
... It is often argued that most automakers shifted their R&D activities from batteryelectric to fuel cell technologies during the 2000s -leading to a hydrogen or fuel cell hype -and shifted again towards battery electric technologies by the end of the decade Bakker, 2010b;Penna & Geels, 2015;van den Hoed, 2005). However, the dynamics of the sector that is observed in our patent data indicates a much more incremental and co-evolutionary process between these technologies rather than a competitive pattern, with most manufacturers progressively adopting active positions in alternative technologies development (Oltra & Saint Jean, 2009b;Wells & Nieuwenhuis, 2012;Sierzchula et al., 2012). ...
Thesis
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Overall, the thesis draws upon evolutionary economics’ main hypothesis: the link between the dynamics of economic growth, market structures, and technological change (Nelson and Winter, 1982; Perez, 1983; Schumpeter, 1942; Utterback and Suarez, 1993), which we use as background to understand both why ecoinnovation, by being a process of technological and economic change, is essential to the greening of the economy, and if there are regularities in this process similarly to the regularities that are reported in the “traditional” innovation literature. The thesis is based in five articles that are here represented in chapters (Chapter 2 to 6). The discussion starts with two papers that are centered in the critical discussion of eco-innovation concept and its development and narrows to the ultimate focus of discussing empirically and theoretically sectoral patterns of ecoinnovation.
... Ethnographic investigations of future imaginaries demonstrate how futures are constructed through material orderings of space, thus supporting and reproducing particular expectations (Watts 2008). Recently, more quantitative studies have emerged (Bakker 2010;Budde, Alkemade, and Hekkert 2015). ...
... The notion of hype is also widely used to denote promises which are strategically exaggerated in order to gain attention and interest (Brown 2003). From early on, studies in the field embarked on a critical analysis of hype and its effects (Bakker 2010;Brown 2003;Petersen 2009). Pollock and Williams (2010) have followed how the Gartner Group and other consultancies employ hype: they refer to these as "promissory organizations" because they operate by shaping and modifying expectations within procurement and innovation markets. ...
... Pollock and Williams (2010) have followed how the Gartner Group and other consultancies employ hype: they refer to these as "promissory organizations" because they operate by shaping and modifying expectations within procurement and innovation markets. Recently, the patterns of expectation dynamics have been scrutinized more closely and for different technology fields (Alkemade and Suurs 2012; Budde, Alkemade, and Hekkert 2015; Melton, Axsen, and Sperling 2016; van Lente, Spitters, and Peine 2013), as well as the conditions and processes which contribute to hype and its effects (Bakker 2010;Hedgecoe 2010;Konrad 2006;Konrad et al. 2012;Morrison and Cornips 2012). The ups and downs of expectations have furthermore been investigated as the result of contestation, competition, and also supportive relations between expectations, mainly in relation to recent developments in energy technologies such as fuel cells, hydrogen and electric cars (Alkemade and Suurs 2012; Bakker, van Lente, and Engels 2012;Budde and Konrad 2015). ...
... Such framing can be far more superficial than workday framing among scientists immersed in the details of focused research and development projects. Nonetheless, it can provide lasting rationale for thoughts, decisions and actions-even when risks and failings are evident [11][12][13][14][15]. ...
... It has been argued that the current framing of AI research and philosophy needs to be widened. This is because framing provides lasting rationale for thoughts, decisions and actions-even when risks and failings are evident [8][9][10][11][12][13][14][15]. Widening the current framing can be accomplished with reference to scientific research and theories concerned with the nature of intelligence across lifeforms [4][5][6][7]; causation amidst unplanned and planned complexity [44,45]; and emergence from edge effects between formal and informal organizations [79][80][81]. ...
... Thus, the illusion of control can become prevalent wherein it is envisaged that a list of normative statements can encompass and manage all potential effects involving AI [98]. Importantly, research findings indicate that initial framing can lead to suboptimal decisions and actions throughout implementation [8][9][10][11][12][13][14][15]. Hence, the potential of multi-intelligent (MI) hybrid beings and systems is not likely to be explored and realized while anthropocentric, atheoretical, reductionist, mechanistic framing of AI persists. ...
Article
Full-text available
Framing strongly influences actions among technology proponents and end-users. Underlying much debate about artificial intelligence (AI) are several fundamental shortcomings in its framing. First, discussion of AI is atheoretical, and therefore has limited potential for addressing the complexity of causation. Second, intelligence is considered from an anthropocentric perspective that sees human intelligence, and intelligence developed by humans, as superior to all other intelligences. Thus, the extensive post-anthropocentric research into intelligence is not given sufficient consideration. Third, AI is discussed often in reductionist mechanistic terms. Rather than in organicist emergentist terms as a contributor to multi-intelligence (MI) hybrid beings and/or systems. Thus, current framing of AI can be a self-validating reduction within which AI development is focused upon AI becoming the single-variable mechanism causing future effects. In this paper, AI is reframed as a contributor to MI.
... Moreover, as the entry/exit barriers are relatively low, many new actors tend to enter and then shakeout over the time; many initiatives simply fail due to inferior design or limited application, or due to technological hype cycles (Verbong et al., 2008;Ruef and Markard, 2010;Bakker, 2010;Konrad et al., 2012;Bakker and Budde, 2012). Because of the lower degree of structure, uncertainties prevail and activities often have a relatively short lifetime at this level. ...
... However, an important aspect of doing research about alternative powertrain technologies in the automotive industry is to avoid falling into the glories of technological hypes which are still immature and tend to fadeout over the time or those that require a long period of time to become available as fully functioning vehicles in the market (Bakker, 2010;Bakker and Budde, 2012). We have been aware of such trends and wanted to make sure that technology demonstrations at the exhibitions were not just prototype samples or mock-ups, but rather vehicles that could be delivered to customers. ...
... The interface between the range extender and the electric powertrain is relatively simple (similar to series-hybrid configuration) and the result is a vehicle that is more flexible in terms of operation. Range extenders based on hydrogen fuel cells and other sources of energy have also been presented but still considered as developing technologies with lower readiness for everyday demanding applications (Bakker, 2010;Bakker and Budde, 2012;Konrad et al., 2012). ...
Article
Using sociotechnical transitions literature, this paper analyses the early market introduction of electric city-buses in Europe. It identifies the role of bus manufacturers and their corresponding choices of alternative powertrain and charging technologies. The study results contrast the traditional dichotomy of incumbents versus niche actors and questions perceived role of incumbents as a homogenous group of actors. The paper proposes an alternative to the typical perception of industry incumbents as the guardians of the current sociotechnical regime, suggesting that a strong position in the established regime may actually facilitate introduction of radical technological solutions. The paper invites transition scholars to make more detailed analyses of actors' constellations and it further suggests that policy makers need to pay attention to the diversity of individual actors' strategies.
... Moreover, as the entry/exit barriers are relatively low, many new actors tend to enter and then shakeout over the time; many initiatives simply fail due to inferior design or limited application, or due to technological hype cycles (Verbong et al., 2008;Ruef and Markard, 2010;Bakker, 2010;Konrad et al., 2012;Bakker and Budde, 2012). Because of the lower degree of structure, uncertainties prevail and activities often have a relatively short lifetime at this level. ...
... However, an important aspect of doing research about alternative powertrain technologies in the automotive industry is to avoid falling into the glories of technological hypes which are still immature and tend to fadeout over the time or those that require a long period of time to become available as fully functioning vehicles in the market (Bakker, 2010;Bakker and Budde, 2012). We have been aware of such trends and wanted to make sure that technology demonstrations at the exhibitions were not just prototype samples or mock-ups, but rather vehicles that could be delivered to customers. ...
... The interface between the range extender and the electric powertrain is relatively simple (similar to series-hybrid configuration) and the result is a vehicle that is more flexible in terms of operation. Range extenders based on hydrogen fuel cells and other sources of energy have also been presented but still considered as developing technologies with lower readiness for everyday demanding applications (Bakker, 2010;Bakker and Budde, 2012;Konrad et al., 2012). ...
Article
Using sociotechnical transitions literature, this paper analyses the early market introduction of electric city-buses in Europe. It identifies the role of bus manufacturers and their corresponding choices of alternative powertrain and charging technologies. The study results contrast the traditional dichotomy of incumbents versus niche actors and questions perceived role of incumbents as a homogenous group of actors. The paper proposes an alternative to the typical perception of industry incumbents as the guardians of the current sociotechnical regime, suggesting that a strong position in the established regime may actually facilitate introduction of radical technological solutions. The paper invites transition scholars to make more detailed analyses of actors constellations and it further suggests that policy makers need to pay attention to the diversity of individual actors' strategies.
... Hydrogen economy has been proposed as a vision where hydrogen is used as the energy carrier not only in transportation but also in the power generation sector [6][7][8][9]. However, it is not easy to realize hydrogen economy, and transition from the current energy system to hydrogen economy has been investigated in the previous literature [10][11][12][13][14]. Hydrogen economy has faced the cycle of hope and hype [15] among diverse stakeholders having different expectations [16]. ...
... (14), Honda (13), Nippon Oil Corporation (11), Osaka Gas (11), Nisshinbo (11), Toyota Tsusho (11), Toshiba (9), Toho Gas (8), Sumitomo (7), Idemitsu Kosan (7), Panasonic (7), Nissan (7). JXTG Energy (25), Iwatani (21), Toyota (15), Honda (7), Toyota Tsusho (7). ...
Article
Full-text available
Hydrogen technologies are promising candidates of new energy technologies for electric power load smoothing. However, regardless of long-term public investment, hydrogen economy has not been realized. In Japan, the National Research and Development Institute of New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO), a public research-funding agency, has invested more than 200 billion yen in the technical development of hydrogen-related technologies. However, hydrogen technologies such as fuel cell vehicles (FCVs) have not been disseminated yet. Continuous and strategic research and development (R&D) are needed, but there is a lack of expertise in this field. In this study, the transition of the budgetary allocations by NEDO were analyzed by classifying NEDO projects along the hydrogen supply chain and research stage. We found a different R&D focus in different periods. From 2004 to 2007, empirical research on fuel cells increased with the majority of research focusing on standardization. From 2008 to 2011, investment in basic research of fuel cells increased again, the research for verification of fuel cells continued, and no allocation for research on hydrogen production was confirmed. Thereafter, the investment trend did not change until around 2013, when practical application of household fuel cells (ENE-FARM) started selling in 2009, in terms of hydrogen supply chain. Hydrogen economy requires a different hydrogen supply infrastructure, that is, an existing infrastructure of city gas for ENE-FARM and a dedicated infrastructure for FCVs (e.g., hydrogen stations). We discussed the possibility that structural inertia could prevent the transition to investing more in hydrogen infrastructure from hydrogen utilization technology. This work has significant implications for designing national research projects to realize hydrogen economy.
... 4 These technologies combination linked by hydrogen was the seed for the vision and the need for an alternative to fossil fuels can be seen as fertilizer. 5 Hence, zero in on promoting the hydrogen energy technologies needs to contemplate the trend of that technology. Historical data can provide information about future. ...
... Photo-fermentation [3][4][5] in finding the challenges in these technologies. Technology attractiveness and technology acceleration are introduced. ...
Article
Transition to more renewable energies to render current energy demand and set aside conventional resources for the next generation needs promising strategies. Frame the future energy plan to address the energy crisis requires to have insight and foresight about the hereafter of technologies and their markets. Among different renewable energy resources, hydrogen demonstrates an encouraging future. Therefore, understanding the flexibility and compatibility of hydrogen production technologies is important to pave the way for this transition. One strategy to achieve the mentioned targets is to evaluate different hydrogen technologies based on their life cycle and their acceptance at the commercial scale. For the very first time, various hydrogen production technologies are evaluated in terms of the technology life cycle. A novel approach is employed to find the current state of the hydrogen production technologies market. By applying simple and free tools such as search traffic and patent search, the technology adoption curve and technology life cycle of each hydrogen production technology is assessed. Two criteria are utilized for this matter, patents as a technical indicator and Google trend as a technology interest indicator. For this matter 35 088 patents have been extracted and analysed. Then the data are fitted by logistic function curve to foresight different technologies' life cycle. The technology attractiveness of each hydrogen production technologies is determined by obtaining the ratio of published patents to granted ones. The level of acceptance of each hydrogen technology is assessed by using an adaptation diagram. By the combination of these two diagrams, the current status and future of the technologies are achieved and validated. Findings show that most of the hydrogen production technologies are in the slope of enlightenment and plateau of productivity stages.
... A setback represents a technological challenge that is revealed posteriori as industry participants exert efforts towards the technological advance, checking or reversing the initial progress in an emerging technology. 1 Setbacks are a relatively common feature of technology emergence, as has been made evident by the cases of ballpoint pens (Cooper and Smith, 1992), biogas (Geels and Raven, 2006), electric cars (Garud and Gehman, 2012), fuel cells (Bakker, 2010) and semiconductor lithography equipment (Adner and Kapoor, 2016). However, studies of technological change and industry evolution have not systematically explored how industry participants react to those setbacks. ...
... A broad set of industry participants in the auto industry pursued this emerging technology as a lower-cost and environmentally friendly alternative to gasoline-powered combustion engines. However, in the mid-2000s, the initial excitement was followed by a period of setbacks as the low density of hydrogen gas limited the amount of hydrogen that could be stored in a vehicle, and avoiding impurities in producing hydrogen to prevent unintended electrochemical reactions proved to be very costly (Andújar and Segura, 2009;Bakker, 2010). 3 Similar episodes of setbacks in emerging technologies have been documented in the cases of ballpoint pens, steam engine-powered ships, and semiconductor lithography (Adner and Kapoor, 2016;Cooper and Smith, 1992;Geels, 2002). ...
Article
Emerging technologies are an important driver of economic growth. However, the process of their emergence may not only be characterized by technological progress but also by setbacks. We offer a perspective on technology emergence that explicitly incorporates setbacks into the technology's evolution and explains how industry participants may react to setbacks in emerging technologies. We consider that the locus of innovation in an emerging technology encompasses different types of organizations (industry incumbents, entrants and public research organizations (PROs)) who operate in different institutional environments, and explore how these organizations react to setbacks in terms of their R&D efforts. We study two emerging biotechnologies in the global pharmaceutical industry - gene therapy (GT) and monoclonal antibodies (mAbs). The emergence of both technologies during the 1990s was punctuated by periods of setbacks. We observe a gradual increase in industry participants' R&D efforts during periods of progress and a significant decline in those efforts immediately following setbacks. The decline in R&D efforts was more pronounced for firms than for PROs as well as for those firms that were listed on the stock market in contrast to those that were privately financed. Finally, the decline in R&D efforts towards GT was much more pronounced for those organizations located in countries with high capital fluidity. These findings reinforce that organizational and institutional characteristics that are typically attributed to facilitate R&D efforts towards emerging technologies do induce greater levels of those efforts during periods of progress. However, the same characteristics are also associated with a significant decline in R&D efforts immediately following periods of setbacks. Overall, the study illustrates how setbacks reconfigure the locus of innovation in emerging technologies and offers a richer perspective on technology emergence as one that is rooted in both progress and setbacks. In so doing, it highlights the challenges of sustaining technological progress and offers guidance for policy.
... HFC technology has been through a number of cycles of development since the 1970s, with decades of heightened interest (hypes) and development, followed by disillusionment and re-focusing. This is normal for technical innovations (Bakker, 2010;Budde et al., 2012;Suurs et al., 2009). ...
... • Improve consumer knowledge and awareness of FCEVs and hydrogen -through the implementation of a strategic marketing plan and education programme with a focus on the safety of the technology to increase adoption (Ricci et al., 2008). The implementation should be slightly ahead of the infrastructure development to avoid creating a hype (Bakker, 2010) where expectations are not met. ...
Thesis
Full-text available
This management research challenge investigates the potential consumer perceptions of hydrogen fuel cell vehicles in South Africa (SA). This factor is important for companies taking advantage of the strategic opportunity to reduce Greenhouse Gas emissions from road transport through the combination of Fuel Cell Electric Vehicles (FCEV) and hydrogen as fuel. The strategic opportunity is evaluated from the perspective of the Linde Group, a global industrial gas and hydrogen supplier. Important strategic marketing research and theories such as consumer attitudes, awareness, purchasing behaviour and diffusion of innovations were explored to understand the barriers and drivers for adoption of FCEVs and hydrogen as fuel. Interviews were conducted with 14 people chosen from an online social group for electric vehicles and other people who could be accessed conveniently. The sample included current owners of Alternative Fuelled Vehicles (AFVs), people with strong attitudes towards the protection of the environment, people with awareness of hydrogen production and handling, and others. The main findings were: • There is demand in SA for AFVs including Battery Electric Vehicles (BEVs) and FCEVs. • Consumer attitudes supporting the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, combined with an innovative attitude towards vehicles and an awareness of BEV technology, contributed to adoption of BEVs among respondents in SA. • General awareness of FCEVs, hydrogen properties and production, and of BEVs (for those respondents who did not own a BEV) was low. • Advantages found for FCEVs over Internal Combustion Engine Vehicles (ICEVs) were performance, environmental benefits and low noise. • Advantages for FCEVs over BEVs were refuelling time, range and performance. • Priorities for improvement for FCEVs were total cost, infrastructure, knowledge, safety and the variety and availability of vehicles. • Low emission zone access, reserved driving lanes and free parking did not register as incentives which would increase adoption in SA. • Refuelling stations needed to be located three to five kilometres from home or work, and 250–300 km apart between major cities. A distance of 30–50km was considered too far to travel to refuel, although respondents were willing to travel further to refuel because of cashback incentives/rewards available in SA. • Consumer needs varied widely, with quality, service and reliability being the top ranked need followed by environmental impact and price. Respondents generally preferred BEVs over FCEVs, however recent commercialization of FCEVs internationally indicates increased competition. The findings in general support other international studies, but due to the qualitative approach and limited sample set, the results cannot be generalized for South Africa or over time. Further quantitative research is recommended to provide statistically relevant support for these results. A recommended action plan for Linde is provided which includes identification of low cost feedstocks to reduce the cost of hydrogen, increasing consumer awareness and knowledge, and developing a well-targeted needs-based strategic marketing plan, to increase adoption of FCEVs and hydrogen. Overall the MRC approach provides a good framework to explore company strategy and strategic marketing aspects of FCEV and hydrogen and could be used as a basis for future research in this area.
... Figure S1 UK final energy consumption by sector and fuel in 2015, data from DUKES. 1 In the short term, fossil fuel emissions can be reduced by using more efficient technologies such as condensing boilers and hybrid cars, reducing demand through energy conservation measures, or fuel switching from coal to natural gas. Ultimately these fossil fuels must be replaced or their CO2 emissions captured to achieve the lowcarbon energy system required by law. ...
... The potential for hydrogen and fuel cell energy systems to make a substantial contribution to clean, sustainable energy systems has long been identified. Hydrogenpowered fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEVs) received much exposure during the 2000s, but a lack of commercial models contributed some disillusion and a switch of attention to battery electric vehicles [1]. Nevertheless, hydrogen and fuel cell vehicles may now be approaching commercial maturity as major manufacturers including Honda, Toyota and Hyundai launch the first mass-produced FCEV passenger vehicles. ...
Technical Report
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This White Paper has been commissioned by the UK Hydrogen and Fuel Cell (H2FC) SUPERGEN Hub to examine the roles and potential benefits of hydrogen and fuel cell technologies within each sector of future energy systems, and the transition infrastructure that is required to achieve these roles.
... This problem makes the development of commercial FCVs not proceed as quickly as anticipated. The progress is often marginal, and the target is not met on schedule (Bakker, 2010;Blanchette, 2008). Furthermore, despite improving material, water, and heat management studies, scaling up the fuel cell stack still makes it more susceptible to performance degradation (Miller and Bazylak, 2011;Radev et al., 2013). ...
Article
Increasing responsibility toward the environment forced the transportation sector to shift its gear toward the electric vehicle. While battery electric vehicle (BEV) have started enjoying success, it poses a question as to whether or not fuel cell vehicle (FCV) becomes redundant even before being widely deployed. The commercialization of FCV usually only comes after a long period after the prototype was introduced, signifying certain barriers to large-scale utilization. Aside from the various LCAs, studies have also tried to estimate the future cost and model FCV adoption. Due to the limited data and different regional conditions in which the project was done, these researches used vastly different scenarios and assumptions, making the result differ significantly. The lack of a clear-cut answer might indicate that the fate of FCV is not yet decided, and the PEMFC might still play a part in the green transportation era, albeit not as the dominant technology. Alternative uses and the condition required to utilize them were discussed in this short review
... technology and business strategies). So far, much research on the strategies of incumbents in large sectors such as energy and transport has focused on institutional strategies (Bakker, 2010;Geels and Verhees, 2011;Rosenbloom et al., 2016) or technology strategies (Budde et al., 2012;Magnusson and Berggren, 2011). In contrast, the focus of this paper is on business strategies. ...
Article
Full-text available
This paper answers recent calls to give more attention to the business strategies of incumbent actors regarding innovation and socio-technical transitions. We map the solar business model adoption of 30 Swedish electric utility incumbents and examine to what extent it can be explained by the strategic fit with the utilities' established business models, corporate strategies, and external environment. We find that all three dimensions need to be considered in order to explain adoption. Alignment with the established business model is mainly important concerning activities, resources, and partnerships, and utilities also re-configure solar models to increase this alignment (e.g. through outsourcing). However, it is not the main driver for adoption. Instead, incentives and pressures related to corporate strategies and external environment induce or block retailers from adopting solar models. By demonstrating the importance of strategic fit, these findings provide a more nuanced understanding of industry incumbent's strategies in relation to emerging technologies.
... If the promises are not fulfilled in the short run, public opinion and attention may quickly turn away, without giving the technology a proper chance for its benefits to materialize (Caulfield, 2004). Hence, hype cycles can lead to overly quick disappointments and consequential withdrawal of support (Bakker, 2010). However, in some cases, the institutionalization processes that such hypes trigger may continue after the hype has ended and keep promoting further diffusion and development of the technology (Ruef and Markard, 2006). ...
Article
Full-text available
Variations in the frequency and tone of news media are the focus of a growing literature. However, to date, empirical investigations have primarily confirmed the existence of such differences at the country level. This paper extends those insights to the subnational level. We provide theoretical arguments and empirical support for systematic regional variations in the frequency and sentiments of news related to innovation and new technologies. These variations reflect regional socio-economic structures. We find that the average newspaper circulating in urban areas features more news on innovation and new technologies than than media in more rural areas. Similar findings hold for locations in East Germany and to a certain degree for regions with low unemployment. The sentiments of innovation and new technology news are negatively associated to the unemployment rate, and they tend to be lower in regional newspapers than in national ones. Overall, our results suggest a strong link between the regional socioeconomic conditions and how newspapers circulating in these places report on innovation and new technologies.
... For measuring the innovative performance of a firm or an economy, patents were used as a valuable source of information for researchers [40]. Although some studies used production models and partnerships [41][42][43][44][45] as technological indicators, patents have been accepted as a better indicator for actual technological development in literature [46][47][48] and they have been used as technological forecasting indicators [49,50]. Since patents are available in large quantities in long time series, comprehensive longitudinal analyses might be conducted [46][47][48]. ...
Conference Paper
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There appears to be increasing policy emphasis globally on supporting the development of electric vehicle (EV) technologies linked to industrial growth. The key reason for this is that the electrification of the vehicle drivetrain offers a viable solution for the sustainability requirements of the transport sector and to achieve emission reduction targets. However, different countries use different innovation policies to support the local development of EV technologies and domestic EV industry. To support national governments in making informed decisions, this paper seeks to develop a framework providing an ex-ante impact of various innovation decisions. This framework is based on "adaptive neuro-fuzzy inference system" (ANFIS). The necessary data for ANFIS framework is generated by analysing EV innovation policies of United States, Japan, European Union, Germany, France and United Kingdom and comparing them with the actual EV technology development that is measured by patent filings on those regions. Next, an ANFIS model has been constructed by specifying an equation and transforming the generated dataset into input-output data pairs. Finally, the data pairs are used for training and validating the ANFIS framework by using MATLAB software. The training results indicate that such framework can be applied for evaluating current EV innovation policies and predicting the future technology development with the introduced set of inputs owing to ANFIS`s backward and forward-pass mechanism.
... Fuel cells and hydrogen are becoming more and more popular. 24,25 Several types of fuel cells can be categorized according to the operating environment (eg, temperature), fuel cell size and configuration (eg, massive, small, or mini scale system), and the features of the polymer electrolyte membrane (PEM). [26][27][28] Fuel cell systems include anion exchange membrane fuel cells (AEMFCs), proton exchange membrane fuel cells (PEMFCs), direct alcohol fuel cells, phosphoric acid fuel cells, molten carbonate fuel cells (MCFCs), 29 and solid oxide fuel cells (ceramic ion-conducting electrolyte). ...
Article
Carbon quantum dots (CQD) and graphene quantum dots (GQDs) have been mentioned frequently. They have been selected in recent studies as they have unique and remarkable potential, especially in electrical, optical, and optoelectrical properties. CQD and GQDs have very high chemical and physical stability due to inherent inert carbon material, thus newly recognized as a kind of quantum dots material. Its environmentally friendly, non‐toxic, and naturally inactive nature is also a major attraction for scientists around the world. In this work, CQD and GQDs production methods are discussed in detail, including soft‐template method, hydrothermal method, microwave‐assisted hydrothermal (MAH) method, metal‐catalyzed method, liquid exfoliation method, electron beam lithography method, and others. Additive material has been introduced in CQD and GQDs to increase the ability and performance of CQD and GQDs such as nitrogen, sulfur, chlorine, fluorine, and potassium. In particular, the presence of additive material in CQD and GQDs shows an advantage in terms of energy level, which is very good at achieving specific requirements in properties such as optical, electrical, and optoelectrical. In addition, the existence of functional groups consisting of heteroatoms such as oxygen, nitrogen, sulfur, phosphorus, boron, and so on of zero‐dimensional carbon materials in providing an overabundance of the active electrochemical site for the reaction. The product of CQD and GQDs has various shapes and sizes influenced by several parameters such as synthesis temperature, growth time, source concentration, catalyst, and so on. The application of CQDs and GQDs composites in fuel cells has been clearly and scientifically stated as it has enhanced the performance of fuel cell technology.
... Studies in the field of the sociology of expectations suggest that actors weave together accounts of the past, present, and future to build credible expectations (Alkemade and Suurs, 2012;Brown and Michael, 2003); draw on metaphors and images (Nerlich and Halliday, 2007;Van Lente, 1993); include statements about the technology's performance, historical progress, path forward, and end targets ; and adjust their framing as changes in the material environment render previous claims non-credible (Bakker and Budde, 2012;Brown and Michael, 2003). In addition, in line with the literature on impression management, the literature shows that actors use modest or even negative statements in combination with positive framing to forestall future disappointments (Bakker, 2010;Berkhout, 2006;Moreira and Palladino, 2005;Tutton, 2011). For example, Gardner et al. (2015) describe how clinicians providing deep brain stimulation to children with movement disorders used a mix of optimistic and more ambivalent and modest visions of the future when communicating with patients, to avoid raising unrealistic expectations and hopes. ...
Article
Previous work stresses that actors use strategic technology framing—i.e. purposeful language and rhetoric—to shape technology expectations, persuade stakeholders, and influence the evolution of technologies along their life-cycle. Currently, however, the literature predominantly describes strategic technology framing as a sociopolitical process, and provides only limited insights into how the framing itself is shaped by the material characteristics of the technologies being framed. To address this shortcoming, we conducted a comparative, longitudinal case study of two leading research organizations in the United States and Germany pursuing competing solar photovoltaic (PV) technologies to examine how technology characteristics shape the strategic framing of technologies. We show that to frame PV technologies in their own favor, executives made use of four framing dimensions (potential, prospect, performance, and progress) and three framing tactics (conclusion, conditioning, and concession). Moreover, we show that which framing dimensions and tactics actors selected depended on the maturity and evolution of the technology they pursued, respectively. By highlighting how technology characteristics shape strategic technology framing, we contribute to the literatures on social movements, institutional entrepreneurship, and impression management. Additionally, by providing a coherent framework of strategic technology framing, our study complements existing findings in the literature on the sociology of expectations and contributes to a better understanding of how technology hypes emerge.
... After 2010, the number of publications in Hydrogen Storage decreased. According to Bakker [37], during the 2000's, Hydrogen Energy experienced a hype cycle type of development [38]. At the beginning of the decade, the field attracted a lot of media attention, and there were inflated expectations regarding its performance and deployment. ...
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Hydrogen is a promising sustainable energy carrier for the future due to its high energetic content and no emissions, other than water vapor. However, its full deployment still requires technological advances in the renewable and cost-effective production of hydrogen, cost reduction of fuel cells and especially in the storage of hydrogen in a lightweight, compact and safe manner. One way to achieve this is by using materials in which hydrogen bonds chemically, or by adsorption. Different kinds of Hydrogen Storage Materials have been investigated, such as Metal-Organic Frameworks (MOFs), Simple Hydrides (including Magnesium Hydride, MgH2), AB5 Alloys, AB2 Alloys, Carbon Nanotubes, Graphene, Borohydrides, Alanates and Ammonia Borane. Billions have been invested in Storage Materials research, resulting in tens of thousands of papers. Thus, it is challenging to track how much effort has been devoted to each materials class, by which countries, and how the field has evolved over the years. Quantitative Science and Technology Indicators, produced by applying Bibliometrics and Text Mining to scientific papers, can aid in achieving this task. In this work, we evaluated the evolution and distribution of Hydrogen Storage Materials research using this methodology. Papers in the 2000–2015 period were collected from Web of Science and processed in VantagePoint® bibliometric software. A thesaurus was elaborated relating keywords and short phrases to specific Hydrogen Storage Materials classes. The number of publications in Hydrogen Storage Materials grew markedly from 2003 to 2010, reducing the pace of growth afterwards until a plateau was reached in 2015. The most researched materials were MOFs, Simple Hydrides and Carbon-based materials. There were three typical trends in materials classes: emerging materials, developed after 2003, such as MOFs and Borohydrides; classical materials with continuous growth during the entire period, such as Simple Hydrides; and stagnant or declining materials, such as Carbon Nanotubes and AB5 Alloys. The main publishing countries were China, countries from the European Union (EU) and the USA, followed by Japan. There is a division between countries with continued growth in recent years, such as China, and those with stagnant production after 2010, such as the EU, the USA and Japan. The results of this work, compared to a previous study in storage materials patenting by our group, and the recent launch of commercial hydrogen cars and trains and stationary hydrogen production and fuel cell solutions, indicates that although the Hydrogen Energy field as a whole is transitioning from lab and prototype stages to commercial deployment, materials-based hydrogen storage still has base technological challenges to be overcome, and therefore still needs more scientific research before large scale commercialization can be realized. The developed thesaurus is made available for refinement and future works.
... Sub-networks by technological pathways have been subsequently isolated to search for potential distinctive features and examine mutual interactions. 7 For the functional analysis, this research rests on an EHA of the European PtX-TIS. EHA stems from organizational studies and from works initiated by researchers at the Minnesota Innovation Research Program to understand how and why innovation develops in a firm [98,128]. ...
Article
Tackling climate change requires to decarbonize all energy applications. To that end, producing hydrogen from low-carbon electricity and water by means of water electrolysis is garnering increasing attention. Hydrogen can indeed be used directly or further synthetized into chemical compounds that replace fossil fuels, hence providing a solution to address energy applications ill-suited for direct electrification. This concept, coined as power-to-X (PtX), remains yet in a formative phase characterized by high uncertainty. This paper takes on a technological innovation system (TIS) approach to examining the development of PtX in Europe. TIS surmises that technology diffusion is influenced by the structures of the socio-technical system it is part of and by how the latter functions. The case study engages TIS with the complexity of multi-sectoral, multi-purpose technology and explores the incorporation of social network analysis to scrutinize application configuration. The paper finds that the European PtX-TIS is growing and shows early signs of system building motor of innovation. However, the analysis also suggests that the lack of market formation and the underlying conflicts of interest across its wide actors’ basis might jeopardize its future development.
... Nevertheless, the adoption of a new technology is difficult and not always possible to predict using a technology adoption model. This is the case of the hydrogen hype in the automobile sector (Bakker 2010), which failed to meet expectations, and eventually paved the road for hybrid and electric vehicles. Other more revolutionising transport technologies and products, such as the Segway personal transporter simply did not meet hype and expectations (Kemper 2003). ...
Article
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This paper focuses on the development of a taxonomy framework for new and emerging technologies and trends in the transport sector. This framework is proposed towards the assessment and monitoring of the acceptance, impact and diffusion of technologies and trends, together with a scoring system and a front–end visualisation of the outcomes. In this context, an overview of the transport technology hype over the last years and the establishment of future transport technologies and trends is provided. Issues arising from different constraints, including technological and technical, are taken into account, also considering the transport sector’s interconnection with other sectors and potentially related bottlenecks and drawbacks. The paper outcome is a methodological framework for the creation of different taxonomies for new and emerging transport technologies and trends, achieved through the quantitative assessment of the attractiveness and competitiveness, in terms of diffusion potential, of emerging transport technologies and trends, by associating explicit indices to the various elements of the taxonomies. The proposed taxonomy, assessment and monitoring framework supports innovation management through the identification and evaluation of new and emerging technologies and trends in the field of transport at various levels, thus providing insights to the sector’s stakeholders, while backing the current transport systems’ transformation through technological advances. First published online 10 May 2019
... Sabapathy (2008), analyses the trend of air quality index of 10-years in Bangalore city. Bakker (2010), discusses the hydrogen hype in the automotive industry and how the industry, governments and the public have now turned their eyes to the electric car for achieving a cleaner environment by finding the clean car for the future. Wesseling et al. (2014), discusses the role of car manufacturers and their political coalitions which changed their political strategy with respect to the Californian zero-emission vehicle mandate over the period 2000-2013 using a longitudinal case studies. ...
Conference Paper
Policy formation is one of the critical steps for developing countries. The prime goal of the policy formation is to transform the country’s economy and or improve the quality of life of individual citizens of the country or society as a whole. For every proposed policy, there is always a negative and positive impact on the industries/ companies that are operating in the domain of policy deployment. In such situation, the industries/companies that realize the business opportunities in proposed policy take the lead in helping the government either by shaping or supporting the policy. At the same time, the companies finding a negative impact on them due to proposed new policy, choose to resist or delay the deployment of the proposed new policy. This article presents a case of an Indian Government’s proposed ‘Electric Vehicle (EV) Policy’ and how the various relevant industries, companies and associations reacted to it. The government of India proposed a mandatory policy for ‘Electric Vehicle’ in 2013. As per the policy, vehicles operating on conventional fuel will not be allowed by 2030. However, there were mixed reactions from the stakeholders (companies, industries etc.) who would be impacted positively or negatively by the policy deployment. This article attempts to examine the reaction of various stake holders using Text Mining approach and how the proposed new policy underwent a transition. The analysis consists of: ● Originally proposed policy ● Reactions of the industry to the proposed policy: Shaping, supporting, opposing and slowdown to the proposed new policy ● Government’s reaction to the industry’s reaction and change in its stand.
... Houve um interesse crescente no tema a partir do fim da década de 1990, acompanhando o aumento da preocupação ambiental, porém este diminui após 2008, sendo que dos principais atores, apenas Toyota, GM e o Governo Chinês continuam apostando na tecnologia. De acordo com a literatura, o fato de as dificuldades técnicas terem se mostrado maiores que o esperado levou a um redirecionamento a outras tecnologias mais maduras, como baterias de lítio [12]. No entanto, estas alternativas não aliam as características de sustentabilidade e altas capacidades [13], de forma que a pesquisa e desenvolvimento dos materiais para armazenamento de hidrogênio devem continuar. ...
... Also, policymakers are highly receptive to the jobs question arising with the transformation of a major industry. Other sources of tension and uncertainty include a) hype-disappointment cycles with alternative fuels (Bakker, 2010;Bakker et al., 2014;Budde et al., 2012) and b) the need to include alternatives that radically differentiate themselves from automobility and present important challenges in terms of enabling infrastructure (e.g. multi-modality) and behavioural change (e.g. ...
Article
Addressing sustainability and low carbon objectives calls for radical departures from existing socio-technical trajectories. The substantial implementation gap between sustainability objectives and current unsustainable paths justifies a continued search for more ambitious system transformations and clarity as to how they can be realised. The aim of this article is to unpack the feasibility of such sustainability transitions pathways (STPs), by identifying the analytical dimensions that need to be considered to address challenges for transitions governance and specifying how they can inform comprehensive evaluation efforts. We aim to offer practical examples of how multiple forms of knowledge can be mobilised to support strategic decision-making, and so complement traditional modelling-based scenario tools. We base our evaluation of STPs on a broad understanding of feasibility and elaborate a frame to mobilise what we see as three ‘facets’ of STPs: representations for exploring sustainability transitions potentials, as well as the conditions under which STPs may have greater chances of becoming realised. The resulting evaluation frame allow us to generate specific prescriptions about STPs feasibility that can focus interdisciplinary research on the relevance of mobilising a plurality of forms of knowledge in evaluation efforts, a more detailed understanding of the potential of a given solution or pathway, and more detailed assessment of different key dimensions. We end by discussing how the notion of STPs feasibility can help open up decision-making processes and what tangible types of interventions are relevant.
... Hydrogen and fuel cells are seeing a resurgence in interest: large-scale production of fuel cell vehicles has begun, and hundreds of thousands of homes are now heated and powered by fuel cells. 5 A key difference since the last hydrogen ''hype cycle'' 24 in the 2000s is that manufacturing scale up and cost decreases mean hydrogen and fuel cells are being commercialised in several sectors, from portable electronics and backup power to fork-lift trucks. 25,26 Meanwhile, energy systems analyses have become more sophisticated in identifying the complexity of decarbonising heat and transport via full electrification, and thus the need for a flexible and storable energy vectors. ...
Article
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Hydrogen technologies have experienced cycles of excessive expectations followed by disillusion. Nonetheless, a growing body of evidence suggests these technologies form an attractive option for the deep decarbonisation of global energy systems, and that recent improvements in their cost and performance point towards economic viability as well. This paper is a comprehensive review of the potential role that hydrogen could play in the provision of electricity, heat, industry, transport and energy storage in a low-carbon energy system, and an assessment of the status of hydrogen in being able to fulfil that potential. The picture that emerges is one of qualified promise: hydrogen is well established in certain niches such as forklift trucks, while mainstream applications are now forthcoming. Hydrogen vehicles are available commercially in several countries, and 225 000 fuel cell home heating systems have been sold. This represents a step change from the situation of only five years ago. This review shows that challenges around cost and performance remain, and considerable improvements are still required for hydrogen to become truly competitive. But such competitiveness in the medium-term future no longer seems an unrealistic prospect, which fully justifies the growing interest and policy support for these technologies around the world.
... The concept of performativity refers to a recursive, evolving social process by which actors, technologies and even institutions in the real world adapt and align to the performative utterance (Callon, 2007). With this article, we contribute to studies of expectations and their performative role by focusing on the practices, 2 which we call anticipatory practices, by which expectations of the future are created, either in explicit and structured forms, such as in the case of calculations, modelling, scenarios, forecasting, etc.; or in more implicit and less formal ways such as in the case of expectations embedded and embodied in grant proposals, prototypes, standards, or crowdsourcing (Anderson, 2010;Bakker, 2010;Kinsley, 2012;Reichmann, 2013;Alvial Palavicino & Konrad, 2015). ...
Article
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Graphene is a material consisting of ideally one layer of carbon atoms that has been claimed to enable a new wave of disruptive technological innovation. Similar to other techno-scientific fields, graphene research has been populated with far-reaching promises and expectations, and claimed to be subject to over-promising and hype. This article builds on a practice-based approach to understand how expectations contribute to the emergence of the techno-scientific field of graphene. We follow the anticipatory practices that constituted different arenas where expectations on graphene have been voiced, spread and assessed. These arenas relate to scientific, policy and market actors, and anticipatory practices reach from the circulation of promises in high-profile journals, via roadmapping to calculative practices that shape emergent markets. We investigate the specific forms of performativity that different practices create, and how these practices have contributed to the emergence and governance of the graphene field.
... The bold predictions in the 1990s, also from leading car industry executives, concerning a rapid transition to hydrogen-based vehicles here served as a cautionary tale (cf. Bakker, 2010). ...
... Among the technological forecasting-focused papers on the right side of Figure 2 (blue nodes), the co-citation analysis highlights authors [37][38][39] who have engaged in discussions with the joint use of bibliometric and patent analysis. The irst cluster indicated in red is led by research from van den Hoed and Bakker [36,40], who share an interest in the development of fuel cell technology. Citations categorized into the second cluster have an earlier average publication year than that of the irst cluster, including studies on e-mobility innovation coupled with policy, economic, and technology analysis [41][42][43]. ...
... Mainly qualitative studies such as [6][7][8][9][10][11][12][13][14][15][16], outline the challenges as well as relationships between the various actors (such as car manufacturers, suppliers, policy makers, etc.), and describe their roles and significance, in the diffusion of electric mobility. In this context, studies such as [17,18] describe and formalize transition systems with the help of innovation management; mainly based on [19][20][21]. ...
Article
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This work presents a study of how the automotive industry has responded in the last 20 years to pressures driven by economic and environmental issues, and by the transition towards electric mobility. Timelines for the major German automotive OEMs are presented to understand the industry's behaviour in the past in order to design suitable policies that are appropriate to reach future goals around the electrification of road transport. Based upon a comparison of the pressures arising in the automotive sector and the companies' behaviour with regard to technology choice and R&D, a set of hypotheses concerning this behaviour is then presented.
... Collectively-held expectations emerge from ongoing social processes in which multiple actors create and communicate various and often contradictory visions and images of the future (Garud and Ahlstrom, 1997). In order to gain attention in a selective environment, innovating actors compete with each other and with incumbents by constantly voicing expectations (Bakker, 2010). Depending on their respective interests, actors communicate optimistic or pessimistic expectations about a technology. ...
Article
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The widespread diffusion of new technologies is often preceded by hypes, that is periods of a strong rise and subsequent fall in collective expectations, which are usually followed by disappointment. In this study, we focused on the multilevel nature of collective technological expectations and analysed the dynamics of expectations about photovoltaic technology in Germany and Spain over the period of 1992-2015 by conducting a media analysis. Our results indicate that a hype and subsequent phase of disappointment with regard to photovoltaic technology occurred in both countries. However, the results also suggest that these, and particularly the phase of disappointment, were associated with different levels of expectations: while the Spanish hype was followed by a period of pessimism with regard to the profitability of the technology, the disappointment in Germany was dominated by the fear that the technology would negatively affect the economy as a whole. Furthermore, the results allow researchers to gain a better understanding of the interactions among technological expectations and policies, and suggest that, in both countries, national policies played a key role in supporting the formation of positive as well as negative expectations.
... The first analyzes the structuration, the content, and the support of future visions, including temporal patterns regarding ambition, exposure, and decline over time [10]. It is a reflexive strand, focusing on whether and how visions become performative [85,86,13,14]. The second strand focuses on methods for envisioning. ...
Article
In 2010 an initiative was launched to realize a competitive single EU market for natural gas through the use of a future vision. This Gas Target Model (GTM) aimed to provide direction for concrete market development through regulatory structures as well as an overarching scope of what a functioning gas market would entail. This paper assesses the use and impact of such sectoral visions. We develop a framework that builds on the sociology of expectations and foresight studies and distinguish between the envisioning process, vision content, and vision use (output). The analysis follows the development of two versions of the GTM: 2011 and 2015. We find that the GTM has a contradictory nature. The vision that feeds into regulatory structures requires a stable and uniform rule set. The overarching vision requires incorporation of long-term uncertainty and adaptability. Moreover, the sectoral focus requires alignment to adjacent sectors and wider policy considerations. This makes it difficult to set boundaries, to identify relevant actors, and to ensure commitment from these actors. We conclude that the former vision was actively pursued and materialized in Framework Guidelines and Network Codes, while the latter vision is just being identified and framed.
... For measuring the innovative performance of a firm or an economy, patents have been used as a valuable source of information for researchers (Griliches, 1998). Although some studies have used production models and partnerships (Bakker, 2010;Bakker et al., 2012;Frenken et al., 2004;Sierzchula et al., 2012a) as technological indicators, patents have been accepted as a better indicator for actual technological development in literature (Oltra and Saint Jean, 2009a;van den Hoed, 2005;Archibugi and Planta, 1996). According to Pilkington et al. (2002, p.5) "The use of patent information is gaining increasing attention in the fields of innovation and technology management. ...
Article
The application of socio-technical transitions analysis into realms such as sustainable mobility requires understanding the efficacy of policy measures ex ante. Electrification of the vehicle drivetrain is one possible solution to achieve carbon emission targets. National governments are developing policy measures to encourage electric vehicle (EV) technologies. To evaluate policy measures, a framework based on "adaptive neuro-fuzzy inference system" (ANFIS) was developed. For data generation, EV innovation policies of EU, USA, Japan, Germany, France and UK were analysed and compared with the patent filings in those regions. The training and validation of the framework shows that the model is able to predict the development of EV technologies. The model is subsequently applied to Austria to evaluate three proposed policy scenarios. This paper concludes that the developed framework might play a significant role for assisting EV innovation policy-making by enabling ex-ante assessment of the effects of different policy-mixes on the technical change.
... For measuring the innovative performance of a firm or an economy, patents have been used as a valuable source of information for researchers (Griliches, 1998). Although some studies have used production models and partnerships (Bakker, 2010;Bakker et al., 2012;Frenken et al., 2004;Sierzchula et al., 2012a) as technological indicators, patents have been accepted as a better indicator for actual technological development in literature (Oltra and Saint Jean, 2009a;van den Hoed, 2005;Archibugi and Planta, 1996). According to Pilkington et al. (2002, p.5) "The use of patent information is gaining increasing attention in the fields of innovation and technology management. ...
... Although hydrogen has been considered a viable option as an energy carrier for stationary applications, the main application of hydrogen has been linked to the car industry where hydrogen could replace conventional fossil fuels, thus reducing GHG emissions [7,9,21]. During the first decade of this century hydrogen "hype" linked to the car industry peaked [22]. However, despite the cooling down of hydrogen hype, car manufacturers have reached a point where hydrogen driven vehicles are ready for deployment. ...
Article
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This study was aimed to define a methodology based on existing literature and evaluate the levelized cost of hydrogen (LCOH) for a decentralized hydrogen refueling station (HRS) in Halle, Belgium. The results are based on a comprehensive data collection, along with real cost information. The main results indicated that a LCOH of 10.3 €/kg at the HRS can be reached over a lifetime of 20 years, if an average electricity cost of 0.04 €/kWh could be achieved and if the operating hours are maximized. Furthermore, if the initial capital costs can be reduced by 80%, in the case of direct subsidy, the LCOH could even fall to 6.7 €/kg.
... See http://www.ipcc.ch/. other findings in the literature (i.e.Bakker, 2010;Sierzchula, Bakker, Maat, & van Wee, 2012;Wells 95 & Nieuwenhuis, 2012, see Section 5), the development of all green technologies has been conducted 96 simultaneously, as we shall further expand. ...
Article
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We know from evolutionary theory that sectoral characteristics are important to innovation. This paper investigates if sectoral characteristics also are important to eco-innovation, a hitherto under-researched theme. We argue that research into possible sectoral patterns in eco-innovation is key to understanding green industrial dynamics and the greening of the economy. This paper investigates to what degree the economy is greening horizontally (sector-wise). Starting with a sectoral case study, we undertake a longitudinal analysis of the breath and strength of the greening of the automotive sector from 1965 to 2012, focusing on powertrain technologies. The empirical analysis is based on patent data amongst big car producers and focuses on identifying changes in two main aspects: (1) the convergence/divergence of firms’ green strategies and technologies within the automotive sector; and (2) the contribution of alternative key green technological trajectories relative to the dominant design. Our findings indicate that the evolution of relative green patenting has followed a positive, linear growth over the last decades with increasing participation of alternative propulsion technologies and increasing convergence of automakers’ strategies towards a diversified portfolio.
... Recent interest in EVs represents only a renewal of an extended history of activity surrounding this technological innovation (Høyer, 2008), partially motivated by the presence of hype cycles in this market which inflate expectations concerning market potential (Bakker, 2010). Initial research in EV demand (some 30 years ago) utilised econometric models to identify a number of prominent barriers to adoption associated with EV price premiums, high discount rates of operating costs and anxiety towards reductions in vehicle range (Beggs et al. 1981;Calfee, 1985). ...
Article
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This paper presents results from a segmentation analysis of the emerging market for Electric Vehicles (EVs). Data has been sourced through the application of a self-completion household questionnaire distributed over two cities in the United Kingdom (UK). A two stage cluster analysis methodology has been followed to identify market segments in a dataset of UK drivers. Five unique segments have been identified in the analysis and are characterised by their preferences for EVs, socio-economic characteristics, current car details, and socio-psychological profiles. These segments hold a range of different EV preference levels, from those who appear unwilling to adopt an EV to those which are clearly attracted to EVs. Moreover, the features of these segments tend to suggest that segments might be attracted to or repelled from EVs for different reasons. These results demonstrate that a significant degree of consumer stratification is present in the emerging market for EVs, with the possible implications being that policy interventions at the market, as opposed to segment, level may prove ineffective due to their inability to cater for the nuances of important segments.
... Many scholars agree that the development of alternative technologies in the automotive sector was marked 338 by successive movements of excitement and weakening over the last two decades, mainly caused by shifts in 339 policies (e.g. CARB regulation in U.S., European emission standards) and changes in firms' expectations 340 (Bakker, 2010;Dijk & Yarime, 2010;Sierzchula et al., 2012). For instance,the intensity of such fluctuations at the sector 345 level as the data reveals a cumulative pattern of knowledge creation rather than periodic fluctuations in the 346 patenting activities for the technologies considered. ...
Article
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This paper sheds light on some important but underestimated elements of green industrial dynamics: the evolution of firms' eco-innovation strategies and activities within a sector. While eco-innovation sectoral case studies have taken place before, our analysis is distinct in investigating the rate, direction and extent of eco-innovation in the automotive sector, represented here by the main automakers, in order to identify possibly sectoral-specific patterns in firms' strategies, as opposed to divergent strategic behaviors, grounded on evolutionary economic theory. We conduct a two-step empirical analysis using patent data from 1965 to 2012. Our findings suggest a process of co-evolution of firms' strategies and indicate that strong sectoral-specific patterns of eco-innovation are present in this sector from the mid-2000s onwards. For fuel cells technologies, however, we observe the formation of two antagonist patterns. A further econometric analysis is conducted and indicates that the positioning of the firms between these two groups is correlated with the firms' profit margins and the size of firms' patent portfolios.
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Clean technologies play a crucial role in reducing greenhouse gas emissions and protecting the climate. Hydrogen is a promising energy carrier and fuel that can be used in many applications. We explore the global hydrogen technological innovation system (TIS) by analyzing the three knowledge and technology transfer channels of publications, patents, and standards. Since the adoption of hydrogen technologies requires trust in their safety, this study specifically also focuses on hydrogen safety. Our results show that general and hydrogen safety research has increased significantly while patenting experienced stagnation. An analysis of the non-patent literature in safety patents shows little recognition of scientific publications. Similarly, publications are underrepresented in the analyzed 75 international hydrogen and fuel cell standards. This limited transfer of knowledge from published research to standards points to the necessity for greater involvement of researchers in standardization. We further derive implications for the hydrogen TIS and recommendations for a better and more impactful alignment of the three transfer channels.
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Replacing fossil fuels with energy sources and carriers that are sustainable, environmentally benign, and affordable is amongst the most pressing challenges for future socio-economic development. To that goal, hydrogen is presumed to be the most promising energy carrier. Electrocatalytic water splitting, if driven by green electricity, would provide hydrogen with minimal CO2 footprint. The viability of water electrolysis still hinges on the availability of durable earth-abundant electrocatalyst materials and the overall process efficiency. This review spans from the fundamentals of electrocatalytically initiated water splitting to the very latest scientific findings from university and institutional research, also covering specifications and special features of the current industrial processes and those processes currently being tested in large-scale applications. Recently developed strategies are described for the optimisation and discovery of active and durable materials for electrodes that ever-increasingly harness first-principles calculations and machine learning. In addition, a technoeconomic analysis of water electrolysis is included that allows an assessment of the extent to which a large-scale implementation of water splitting can help to combat climate change. This review article is intended to cross-pollinate and strengthen efforts from fundamental understanding to technical implementation and to improve the 'junctions' between the field's physical chemists, materials scientists and engineers, as well as stimulate much-needed exchange among these groups on challenges encountered in the different domains.
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In the development of hydrogen vehicle technologies, the automotive industry adopts a portfolio approach; a multitude of technological options is developed for hydrogen storage and conversion. Patent portfolios of car manufacturers are used as indicators of the variation and selection dynamics of different options. Convergence towards a single combination of storage and conversion technologies would indicate closeness to commercialization of hydrogen vehicles. Even though patent portfolios converge towards a single conversion option, the PEM fuel cell, storage patents only show divergence. This is very different from hydrogen prototype vehicles that have shown strong convergence towards high-pressure storage. These findings raise questions about the commercialization of hydrogen vehicles, as the industry is still searching for promising storage methods. As on-board storage methods are still in development, hydrogen refilling stations would best be kept open to all options rather than high-pressure systems alone.
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This study provides insight into the development of hydrogen and fuel cell technologies in the Netherlands (1980–2007). This is done by applying a Technological Innovation System (TIS) approach. This approach takes the perspective that a technology is shaped by a surrounding network of actors, institutions and technologies. When a technology is in an early stage of development, a TIS has yet to be built up in order to propel technological progress. This build-up process is studied for the hydrogen and fuel cell innovation system in the Netherlands. This is done by systematically studying the dynamics of seven key activities that accelerated (or slowed down) developments around hydrogen and fuel cell technologies. The analysis contributes to a better understanding of these dynamics and of the drivers and barriers that caused them to emerge. The study derives important lessons for practitioners.
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This paper reports a study into the use of US patents to analyse responses to regulatory change in the automobile industry. Confirming that patents are a rich indicator of technological development, it focuses on the development of the electric vehicle (EV) and, in particular, the identification of networks of firms developing EVs. A key finding of the study is the way that car firms have formed links with competitors and with firms and inventors outside the automobile industry, in order to develop this technology. This contradicts the normal product development methods in the automobile industry, and is attributed to the substantially different technologies required for EVs. In addition, the limitations of defining patent searches in terms of products––rather than technologies––are discussed.
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In this article, we analyze R&D portfolios in environmentally friendly automotive propulsion including alternative fuel options. We argue that at the current stage of development, substitution of conventional car technology by a new automotive propulsion technology may lead to premature lock-in of suboptimal technology. To avoid such lock-in, one should value the variety of current R&D activity that enables organizations to learn from multiple options and to create spillovers between options. We further argue that the existence of technological variety is not a sufficient condition to avoid lock-in. Organizational variety is also required to sustain competition and avoid the dominance of few firms that possibly enforce a suboptimal technology within the sector. To assess whether recent developments in R&D have led to both technological variety and organizational competition, we analyze United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) patents in low-emission vehicles (LEVs) during the period 1980–2001 using entropy statistics. Results show that both technological variety and organizational competition have increased steadily since the early nineties, suggesting that premature lock-in is unlikely to occur. From an environmental policy evaluation perspective, we consider the findings as a positive evaluation of the 1990 Californian Low Emission Vehicle program.
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"Vital, very readable guidance for investors, environmentalists, and interested bystanders looking toward a future without fossil fuels." -BOOKLIST "It's hard to argue with the relentless logic...." -E/THE ENVIRONMENTAL MAGAZINE "Readers looking to separate facts from hype about cars running on hydrogen and large-scale fuel cell systems will find a useful primer here."-PUBLISHERS WEEKLY Lately it has become a matter of conventional wisdom that hydrogen will solve many of our energy and environmental problems. Nearly everyone -- environmentalists, mainstream media commentators, industry analysts, General Motors, and even President Bush -- seems to expect emission-free hydrogen fuel cells to ride to the rescue in a matter of years, or at most a decade or two. Not so fast, says Joseph Romm. In The Hype about Hydrogen, he explains why hydrogen isn't the quick technological fix it's cracked up to be, and why cheering for fuel cells to sweep the market is not a viable strategy for combating climate change. Buildings and factories powered by fuel cells may indeed become common after 2010, Joseph Romm argues, but when it comes to transportation, the biggest source of greenhouse-gas emissions, hydrogen is unlikely to have a significant impact before 2050. The Hype about Hydrogen offers a hype-free explanation of hydrogen and fuel cell technologies, takes a hard look at the practical difficulties of transitioning to a hydrogen economy, and reveals why, given increasingly strong evidence of the gravity of climate change, neither government policy nor business investment should be based on the belief that hydrogen cars will have meaningful commercial success in the near or medium term. Romm, who helped run the federal government's program on hydrogen and fuel cells during the Clinton administration, provides a provocative primer on the politics, business, and technology of hydrogen and climate protection.
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Thesis (doctoral)--Universiteit Twente, 1993. Includes bibliographical references (p. [241]-256).
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Future expectations and promises are crucial to providing the dynamism and momentum upon which so many ventures in science and technology depend. This is especially the case for pre-market applications where practical utility and value has yet to be demonstrated and where investment must be mobilised. For instance, clinical biotechnology (including a wide range of genetic therapeutic and engineering applications) has been at the centre of ferocious debates about whether or not promises and expectations will be realized. In some cases, the failure of expectations has severely damaged the reputation and credibility of professions, institutions and industry. The need for a better analytical understanding of the dynamics of expectations in innovation is both necessary and timely. This paper develops the basis for a sociology of expectations, drawing on recent writing within Science and Technology Studies (STS) and case studies of biotechnology innovation. In particular, we offer a model for understanding how expectations will predictably vary according to some key parameters. Such factors include the degree to which technologies and innovation relationships are either relatively established or newly emergent. Expectations will also vary according actors' relative closeness and involvement in knowledge production itself. The paper proceeds by analyzing the way expectations in clinical biotechnology have changed over time. That is, we compare the way the future was once represented with the way it has been represented more recently. The paper concludes by offering a means by which it is possible to map or model the "situatedness of expectations'.
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The Obama Administration wants to end the hydrogen fuel cell vehicles program, which proponents see as the ultimate clean-car technology.
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The California Zero Emission Vehicle (ZEV) rule, adopted in 1990, is arguably one of the most daring and controversial air quality policies ever adopted. Some consider it a policy failure, while others credit it with launching a revolution in clean automotive technology. This paper is the first systematic empirical study of the policy process that resulted in the adoption of the ZEV mandate. We draw upon theoretical frameworks of the policy process, empirical data from public documents, and personal interviews with key stakeholders, to explain how a confluence of technology, policy, and political circumstances created a window of opportunity that led to the adoption of this policy. We expect the conclusions of our analysis to be useful to other policy debates that involve technological innovation.
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This paper applies and elaborates environmental and evolutionary theorising in the context of international research, development and demonstration (RD&D) cooperation. The theoretical framework of analysis lays particular emphasis on identifying and overcoming institutional barriers to international cooperation for the RD&D that contributes to radical and environmentally friendly systemic changes, particularly hydrogen technology. The paper can be characterised as empirically based theory-building, as it elaborates the conceptual framework and attests its validity with interview findings and empirically based literature reviews. The empirical analysis is based on the results of HY-CO Era-Net interviews with government officers of national funding agencies responsible for the coordination of ERA-Net programmes.
Understanding Gartner’s hype cycles
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Fenn, J., 2007. Understanding Gartner's hype cycles. Gartner Research.
Interrelated visions and expectations on fuel cells as a source of dynamics for sustainable transition processes
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Budde, B., Konrad, K., 2009. Interrelated visions and expectations on fuel cells as a source of dynamics for sustainable transition processes. In: KSI Conference, Anonymous, Amsterdam ed., Amsterdam.
Hydrogen cars: fad or the future?
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Service, R.F., 2009. Hydrogen cars: fad or the future? Science 324, 1257-1259.