Alla Ivashchenko

  Anna Kornyliuk

  Yevheniia Polishchuk


The subject of the study is innovation vouchers as a modern tool to support "green" SME projects. Innovation vouchers are financial instruments that perform a number of functions for the development of SMEs. They can stimulate its cooperation between research institutes or universities in the development of innovations and implementation of innovative solutions. It can become an alternative more effective tool for the use of public funds. Innovation vouchers formed the basis of financial support for the implementation of the development strategy of the region in the context of smart specialization. In the countries of the Eastern Partnership, such tools are only part of the practice, while the OECD countries have been actively using them for more than 10 years. In this regard, it was decided to analyze existing SME support programs using innovation vouchers in OECD countries and to give practical recommendations for the implementation of foreign experience in the development of SME support policies in the Eastern Partnership countries. The main method of research is the analytical method. A critical analysis of the scientific literature and policy documents helped form the concept of the use of innovation vouchers by SMEs. The study analyzed 47 programs to support SMEs with innovation vouchers, which operated for 12 years (from 2008 to 2020). Both quantitative indicators (total value of the program with innovation vouchers, maximum voucher value, etc.) and qualitative data (target group, directions of innovation financing) were taken into account. Classification features of innovation vouchers, their target audience, distribution of programs among target group participants (SMEs, companies of different ages, universities, state research institutes, microbusinesses, incubators, gas pedals, science parks, etc.), cost of vouchers, validity of innovation vouchers were determined. The main conclusion may be that when introducing innovation vouchers as tools to support micro-, small- and medium-sized businesses, it must be taken into account that the circle of knowledge providers must be broad (it may include private and public research organizations, universities, and other relevant types of providers). The requirement for co-financing needs to be met as well in order to reduce the risks of inefficient use of funds. In addition, support for innovative enterprises should be broadcast at all levels: local and national. The following target stakeholder groups can benefit from the results of the study: research institutes, universities, SMEs, policy makers, government, NGOs involved in innovation support, etc.

How to Cite

Ivashchenko, A., Kornyliuk, A., & Polishchuk, Y. (2021). INNOVATION VOUCHERS AS A MODERN FINANCIAL TOOL FOR THE DEVELOPMENT OF SMES. Baltic Journal of Economic Studies, 7(5), 78-87.
Article views: 314 | PDF Downloads: 194



financial instruments, SMEs, innovation vouchers, R&D


Case studies. Innovation Vouchers Website. (n.d.). Retrieved October 17, 2021, from

Case study 7: Regional innovation vouchers as an effective tool for supporting technology transfer (2015). Effective Technology Transfer in Biotechnology, 90–107. DOI:

Chiu, W.-H., Lin, W. C., & Liang, C.-J. (2021). The role of Green Finance in community renewable energy projects of Main Region and Taiwan. Lex Localis – Journal of Local Self-Government, 19(3), 503–519. DOI:

Cornet, M., Vroomen Björn, & Marc van der Steeg (2006). Do innovation vouchers help smes to cross the bridge towards science? CPB Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis.

de Savigny, D., Webster, J., Agyepong, I. A., Mwita, A., Bart-Plange, C., Baffoe-Wilmot, A., Koenker, H., Kramer, K., Brown, N., & Lengeler, C. (2012). Introducing vouchers for malaria prevention in Ghana and Tanzania: Context and adoption of innovation in Health Systems. Health Policy and Planning, 27(suppl 4), iv32–iv43. DOI:

Efigence. (n.d.). Innovation vouchers for smes (product PARP) -Polish Development Fund Group. Polski Fundusz Rozwoju (Grupa PFR). Retrieved October 17, 2021, from

Guerrero, M., & Urbano, D. (2019). Effectiveness of technology transfer policies and legislation in fostering entrepreneurial innovations across continents: An overview. The Journal of Technology Transfer, 44(5), 1347–1366. DOI:

Hlaváček, P. (2017). Use of innovation vouchers for the Regional Innovation Environment Development. Economic Annals-ХХI, 166(7–8), 91–95. DOI:

Innovation vouchers. (n.d.). Retrieved October 17, 2021, from

Innovation vouchers. Enterprise Ireland (EI). (n.d.). Retrieved October 17, 2021, from

Innovation vouchers. Innovation Policy Platform. (n.d.). Retrieved October 17, 2021, from

Kholiavko, N., Grosu, V., Safonov, Y., Zhavoronok, A., & Cosmulese, C. G. (2021). Quintuple helix model: investment aspects of higher education impact on sustainability. Management Theory and Studies for Rural Business and Infrastructure Development. 43(1), 111–128. DOI:

Langhorn, K. (2014). Encouraging entrepreneurship with innovation vouchers: Recent experience, lessons, and Research Directions. Canadian Public Administration, 57(2), 318–326. DOI:

Luksic, I., Boskovic, B., Novikova, A., & Vrbensky, R. (2021). Innovative Financing of the Sustainable Development Goals in the countries of Western Balkans. DOI:

Matulova, P., Stemberkova, R., Zdralek, P., Maresova, P., & Kuca, K. (2015). Innovation vouchers as a segment of regional innovation strategy. Procedia Economics and Finance, 26, 842–848. DOI:

Nstathom. (2021, November 8). Innovation vouchers for small and medium-sized enterprises. Innovation vouchers for small and medium-sized enterprises – Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship And Smes – European Commission. Retrieved October 17, 2021, from

Outterson, K., & McDonnell, A. (2016). Funding antibiotic innovation with vouchers: Recommendations on how to strengthen a flawed incentive policy. Health Affairs, 35(5), 784–790. DOI:

Raimi, L., Olowo, R., & Shokunbi, M. (2021). A comparative discourse of sustainable finance options for agribusiness transformation in Nigeria and Brunei: Implications for entrepreneurship and enterprise development. World Journal of Science, Technology and Sustainable Development, ahead-of-print(ahead-of-print). DOI:

Sadiq, M., Nonthapot, S., Mohamad, S., Chee Keong, O., Ehsanullah, S., & Iqbal, N. (2021). Does green finance matter for sustainable entrepreneurship and environmental corporate social responsibility during COVID-19? China Finance Review International, ahead-of-print(ahead-of-print). DOI:

Sala, A., Landoni, P., & Verganti, R. (2015). Small and medium enterprises collaborations with Knowledge Intensive Services: An explorative analysis of the impact of innovation vouchers. R&D Management, 46(S1), 291–302. DOI:

Schade, S., & Grigore, C. (2009). (rep.). Availability and Focus on Innovation Voucher Schemes in European Regions.

Shavina, E., & Prokofev, V. (2020). Implementation of environmental principles of sustainable development in the mining region. E3S Web of Conferences, 174, 02014. DOI:

Shein, E. G., Payusov, A. A., & Kurdyumov, A. V. (2020). Formation of socially oriented projects using the financial and investment mechanism in the field of Environmental Management. E3S Web of Conferences, 222, 06035. DOI:

Shevchenko, T., Vavrek, R., Danko, Y., Gubanova, O., & Chovancová, J. (2021). Clarifying a circularity phenomenon in a circular economy under the notion of potential. Problemy Ekorozwoju, 16(1), 79–89. DOI:

Shkarlet, S., Kholiavko, N., & Dubyna, M. (2019). Information economy: Management of educational, innovation, and research determinants. Marketing and Management of Innovations, (3), 126–141. DOI:

SME Innovation Voucher Scheme. SME Innovation Voucher Scheme | University of Surrey. (n.d.). Retrieved October 17, 2021, from

Spiesberger, M., & Schönbeck, J. (2019). Innovation vouchers for Energy and Innovation Systems’ Transition. Foresight and STI Governance, 13(1), 70–76. DOI:

STIP COMPASS: International Database on Science Technology and Innovation Policies. (n.d.). Retrieved October 17, 2021, from

Voucher schemes in member States - European Commission. (n.d.). Retrieved October 17, 2021, from

Voucher schemes: Zooming in on Innovation Vouchers. Interreg Europe. (n.d.). Retrieved October 17, 2021, from

Yakymchuk, A., Popadynets, N., Valyukh, A., Skrypko, T., & Levkov, K. (2021). Сільський «зелений» туризм як каталізатор розвитку місцевої економіки в процесі децентралізації влади. Agricultural and Resource Economics: International Scientific E-Journal, 232–259. DOI:

Zhao, R., & Radziwon, A. (2021). The impact of innovation vouchers on Green Innovation Efficiency. Academy of Management Proceedings, 1, 14580. DOI: