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Additional resources for Creating Markets for Energy Technologies
For new technologies, improvements in cost and technical performance from one generation to the next may be substantial; in mature technologies learning usually manifests itself in better marketing and new applications of more energy-efficient and cleaner variants of the technology. 43 3. A Research, Development and Deployment Perspective In the context of this book it is important to emphasise that while public sector R&D is important, it cannot directly bring about the cost reductions that will make the new technology competitive in the market place.
The niche markets may be small relative to the total potential for a technology, but they can be important from the viewpoint of providing learning opportunities. Making use of them in deployment programmes can help both to shorten the time before a new technology will be viewed as a viable commercial endeavour and provide a source of business funding for learning investments. Market leaders often use a niche market in developing a ‘challenger’ to an existing technology, viewing it as a stepping stone towards a mass market.
2 The initial sales goal of one million lamps was exceeded by more than 50 percent and five manufacturers commercialised new products; as a result of the programme, 16 new lamp models have been introduced into the US market at reasonable prices. This programme departed from the usual practice of procurement programmes intended to build markets for new technologies in an interesting way, in that it did not guarantee purchases of newly-developed products in advance. 3 A pilot project started in 1999 has pursued increased 2.