Innovation diffusion is important for both firms’ profitability and countries’ economic growth. For these reasons, policies that aim to reduce the main barriers to innovation diffusion are a relevant issue on the agenda of most policy makers. Although the importance of this topic is widely recognized, few studies explore public policies that aim to enhance innovation diffusion. This article attempts to fill this literature gap. Specifically, the study aims to clarify the role of policy makers in promoting new technology diffusion, to identify the barriers that affect the process of innovation diffusion and that are relevant for public policy makers and to analyze potential policies to overcome the main barriers to the diffusion of new relevant technologies. This study shows that public policies must simultaneously address the most relevant barriers to the diffusion of a new technology to be effective. Focusing on only specific barriers by developing policies with a too narrow scope may lead to poor results. The study explores a topic that is almost neglected in the innovation management literature. On the one hand, the article provides a conceptual framework for analyzing public policies. On the other hand, it proposes an overview of the repertoire of policies that policy makers can use to overcome the most relevant barriers to the diffusion of a new technology. In doing so, it also contributes to the debate about the role of the policy maker in the process of innovation development and diffusion.
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