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Frontiers in Educational Research, 2019, 2(12); doi: 10.25236/FER.2019.021213.

Innovation in China: a Systematic Literature Review


Kolja Oswald1, Xiaokang Zhao2

Corresponding Author:
Kolja Oswald

1 Glorious Sun School of Business and Management, Donghua University, Shanghai,  200051, China
2 Glorious Sun School of Business and Management, Donghua University, Shanghai, 200051, China


The purpose of this paper is to assess China’s national system of innovation by analyzing it as a whole. To assess innovation in China, a systematic literature review was conducted. It was found that the Chinese innovation system is unique in its mixed top-down approach, and deserves to be viewed from a Chinese view. China’s innovation system is also heavily divided by regions, as some have high innovation levels and others remain low. It is also found that there is little research on academia and individuals and innovation, and collaboration is becoming a popular organizational research area within innovation research. Practical implications - this paper shows that a top-down innovation approach can be successful. Secondly, policy makers should attempt to create stronger bonds between universities and the industry and government. Thirdly, policy makers should consider the importance of the individual in the process of innovation. Originality/value – This is the first literature review on innovation in China at this range. This literature review assesses the current snapshot of China’s innovation system and offers readers the opportunity to not only get an understanding for China’s innovation system but also identify research gaps.


Innovation; China; Systems of innovation; Organizational innovation; Government innovation

Cite This Paper

Kolja Oswald, Xiaokang Zhao. Innovation in China: a Systematic Literature Review. Frontiers in Educational Research (2019) Vol. 2 Issue 12: 74-91. https://doi.org/10.25236/FER.2019.021213.


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