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Dominique Foray

Dominique Foray 


1 - Short Academic Summary

Dominique Foray is Full Professor at the Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL) and holds the Chair of Economics and Management of Innovation (CEMI).

He is a member of the National Research Council (Switzerland); the Advisory Board of the Swiss Economic Institute (KOF); the World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council; and a foreign member of the Center of Capitalism and Society (Columbia University, New York). He is also a new member of the Expert Commission for Research and Innovation of Germany.

From 2008 to 2011, he served as chairman of the expert group “Knowledge for Growth”; a group of prominent economists created to advise Commissioner J. Potocnik (European Commission, DG research). This is during his service as member of this Group that he developed the concept of smart specialisation (together with P.A.David and B.Hall) that is now a key policy mechanism of the EU (cohesion policy).

D. Foray research interests include all topics and issues related to the economics and management of technology, knowledge and innovation at both the micro and macro levels. This broad field covers the economics of science and technology with a particular focus on high tech sectors, the management of large-scale technological projects, international comparisons of institutions, and systems of innovation within the context of the new economy. Intellectual property and competition policies, information technology and the new economy, capital market and entrepreneurship, national systems of innovation are fields of high relevance in his research.

D.Foray is currently developing evidence-based policy research to try to understand the hidden factors and reasons of the Swiss outstanding position in terms of research and innovation. He is also involved in works about research evaluation and assessment (as part of his job in the Division IV of the FNS).

D. Foray is recognized as one of the leading academic experts in the economics of innovation and knowledge and economic policy implications of the new knowledge-based economy and has presented many opening speeches and key note addresses in academic and policy conferences on these topics.

He has written numerous academic papers and has edited several books and special issues in these fields:

  • Technology and the Wealth of Nations  (Pinter, 1992) with C.Freeman;
  • Technology Infrastructure Policy (Kluwer, 1996) with M.Teubal et al.;
  • Technology and the environment (a special issue of Technological Forecasting and Social Change, 1996) with A.Grübler;
  • Unemployment and Growth in the Knowledge-based Economy (OECD, 1996), with B.A.Lundvall;
  • Knowledge management and innovation (Kluwer, 2001), with J. de la Mothe;
  • Knowledge economies and societies (a special issue of the International Social Science Journal, Basil Blackwell, 2002, with editions in French, Spanish, Chinese, Arabs, Russian);
  • Measuring knowledge management in the business sector: first steps (OECD, 2003) with F.Gault;
  • Random evaluation in education and medicine (a special issue of Economics of Innovation and New Technology, 2006) with R.Murnane and R.Nelson;
  • The Economics of knowledge (MIT press, 2004, paperback in 2006) with editions in France, Italy, Korea, China, Greece, Syria and Algeria
  • The New Economics of Technology Policy, Edward Elgar, 2009.

2 – Education, previous appointments and academic positions

  • D. Foray received his Ph.D. in economics in 1984 and his "habilitation à diriger des recherches" in 1992 from the University Lumière of Lyon. 
  • In 1985, D. Foray joined the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS) as a Research Fellow in economics.
  • In 1990, he joined the Ecole Centrale de Paris as professor of economics, and taught in the program “ingénieur économiste”.
  • In 1993, he was nominated as Research Director at CNRS and joined the “Institut pour le Management de la Recherche et de l'Innovation” (IMRI) of the University of Paris-Dauphine. 
  • In 2001-2004, he worked as a Principal Analyst at the Center for Education, Research and Innovation of OECD (Paris). 
  • He joined the EPFL as Professeur Ordinaire in 2004.

In addition to that, D. Foray received the distinction of outstanding research in 1995 (médaille du CNRS) and won the Futuris award in 2011..

He has also been Research Fellow at ICER (International Center for Economic Research) in Torino, at the Wissenschaftkolleg in Berlin and at IIASA in Laxenburg; and he has been Invited Professor at the Universities of Santiago de Compostela, Torino and Padova.


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