BECOMING THE NEXT ADVENTURE?: Exploring the complexities of path creation: The case of offshore wind power in Norway
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- Institutt for geografi 
The point of departure for this thesis is the path dependence/path creation debate in economic geography. This thesis explores complexities of path creation processes, focusing empirically on the development of an emerging offshore wind power (OWP) industry in Norway. The OWP industry can be seen as a distinct new industry - a new 'industrial development path' - albeit one with strong linkages to various established industry paths and – in Norway - the offshore oil and gas (O&G) industry in particular. In the first decade of the 2000s, OWP became framed as a potential new 'industrial adventure' in Norway. In analysing the development of this industry, the thesis revolves processes of technological change, innovation and transformation at the intersections of firm, industry and institutional dynamics. The main aim of this thesis is to contribute to economic geography theorizing on path creation. Although the development of new industries is high on both research and political agendas across the globe, the actual emergence of novelty in many respects lacks explanation. A variety of theoretical concepts and debates inform the thesis. In particular, the thesis aims to contribute to evolutionary economic geography (EEG). As such, it questions some of EEGs theoretical underpinnings and provides both supplementary and alternative perspectives that are of particular relevance to understanding path creation processes, especially within sectors such as energy. The thesis comprises a first introductory part and a second part made up of two published and two submitted (in review process) research articles. The introductory part outlines the theoretical and empirical background of the thesis, describes research approach and data, and presents overall conclusions and contributions. The research articles address four different themes relevant to path creation processes. The first theme concerns the issues of relatedness, related variety and knowledge spillovers. The article Same Sea, Different Ponds: Cross-Sectorial Knowledge Spillovers in the North Sea departs from a questioning of the notion of relatedness in EEG and analyses knowledge spillover processes between established industries (focusing on offshore oil and gas (O&G) and OWP. The second theme relates to the regional context of path creation. The article Path creation in a single-industry town: The case of Verdal and Windcluster Mid-Norway employs an open non-constraining perspective on path dependent evolution to analyse how the cluster initiative came about and was shaped by past trajectories as well as emerging opportunities. The third theme relates to the need for a broader perspective on path creation than the firm-centred explanations that dominate EEG. The article Barriers to path creation: the case of offshore wind power in Norway analyses the broader OWP path formation process in Norway, using a framework which focuses on key conditions (and barriers) to path creation. The fourth theme is more conceptual and relates to theoretical perspectives and methodological approaches for understanding the role of agency in path creation or industry emergence. The article Reconsidering path creation in economic geography: aspects of agency, temporality and methods argues that whilst it is well established that 'history matters' economic geographers have largely overlooked the generative power of expectations (i.e. anticipations concerning the future) on path creation processes, implying that also 'futures matter' for understanding the evolution of economic landscapes.
Has partsPaper 1: Steen, Markus; Hansen, Gard Hopsdal. Same Sea, Different Ponds: Cross-Sectorial Knowledge Spillovers in the North Sea. European Planning Studies 2014 ;Volum 22.(10) s. 2030-2049 Is not included due to copyright available at http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/09654313.2013.814622
Paper 2: Steen, Markus; Karlsen, Asbjørn. Path creation in a single-industry town: The case of Verdal and Windcluster Mid-Norway. Norsk Geografisk Tidsskrift 2014 ;Volum 68.(2) s. 133-143 Is not included due to copyright available at http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/00291951.2014.894564
Paper 3: Steen, Markus; Hansen,Hopsdal Gard. Barriers to path creation: the case of offshore wind power in Norway - Is not included due to copyright
Paper 4: Steen, Markus. Reconsidering path creation in economic geography: aspects of agency, temporality and methods. European Planning Studies Vol. 24 , Iss. 9,2016 This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis Group in European Planning Studies on 9, June 2016, available online: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/09654313.2016.1204427