Picture of  Brian Wixted

Brian Wixted PhD Adjunct Professors

Adjunct Professor, Johnson-Shoyama Graduate School of Public Policy and Centre for the Study of Science and Innovation Policy, University of Saskatchewan

Areas of Interest

  • A long interest in the idea of structural analysis of the evolution of the global economy (see Springer 2009)
  • Adoption of new digital technologies in specific economic settings (especially mining and agriculture)
  • 21st Century disrupted innovation policy – adapting to the cyber-economy as much as simply promoting firms to create “innovation”


"To focus on innovation as a career is simply to be captivated by change. To want to understand change you have to try and measure it. However, by its very nature technological innovation rewires economies. We can see this more clearly than ever before with new digital business models changing entire economic structures in retail and transport and other new technologies beginning to change energy models."

During the 1990s, Brian worked for the Australian government on measures of innovation and agricultural science policy. In the early 2000s, he worked for a university research centre (AGEIS at what is now called Western Sydney University). Since moving to British Columbia in 2004, Brian has been involved in research projects on clusters and city innovation systems in Canada, research system evaluations and much more.

Currently (2018) he is finishing up research on digital technology adoption in prairie agriculture.


  • Bachelor of Administration (BAdmin) 1988 (majors in economics and public policy) Griffith University, Australia.
  • Graduate Diploma of Applied Science (Grad Dip App Sci) 1995 (natural resource management) University of Canberra, Australia.
  • Doctor of Philosophy (Commerce), 2006, University of Western Sydney. Thesis title: Systems of Innovation Beyond Borders: Linked Clustering and the Role, Scale and Spatial Structure of Extraterritorial Interdependencies.

Selected Publications


  • Wixted, B. (2009) Innovation System Frontiers: Cluster Networks and Global Value. Springer, Berlin.

Book Chapters (Reviewed)

  • Diaz-Perez, C., Wixted B. and Holbrook, J.A. (2018) ‘Vancouver’s fuel cell cluster: new opportunities or genteel decline?’ chapter six pp 136-166 in van Geenhuizen, M., Holbrook, J.A. and Taheri, M. Cities and Sustainable Technology Transitions Leadership, Innovation and Adoption Edward Elgar Cheltenham UK.
  • Wixted, B. and Holbrook, J.A.D. (2014) ‘Living on the Edge: Knowledge Interdependencies of Human Capital Intensive Clusters in Vancouver’ in Wolfe, D. ed. Innovating in Urban Economies: Economic Transformation in Canadian City-Regions. University of Toronto Press, Toronto.
  • Wixted, B. and Holbrook, J.A.D. (2011) ‘Innovation, cities and place: an empirical study of the knowledge system in Vancouver and its place on the Pacific Rim’ in Melkas, H. and Harmaakorpi , V. eds. (2011) Practice-based Innovation: Insights, Applications and Policy Implications. Berlin: Springer.
  • Wixted, B. and Cooper, R. (2007) ‘The Evolution of OECD ICT Inter-Cluster Networks 1970-2000: An input-output study of changes in the interdependencies between 9 OECD economies’ pp 153-182, in R. Cooper, K. P. Donaghy,  G. J. D. Hewings, (eds.) Globalization and Regional Economic Modeling. Berlin: Springer.

Journal Papers

  • Wixted, B. and Holbrook (2012) ‘Environmental complexity, stakeholders and the evaluation of formal research networks’ Prometheus: critical studies in innovation Vol 30(3):291-314
  • Hira, A., Wixted, B., and Arechavala-Vargas, R. (2012) ‘Explaining sectoral leapfrogging in countries: comparative studies of the wireless sector’ International Journal of Technology and Globalisation Vol 6(1-2): 3-26.
  • Wixted, B. (2012) ‘Alberta: Policy Inaction, Crises, Unintended Consequences and Cluster Success in the Semi-Periphery’ International Journal of Technology and Globalisation. Vol 6(1-2): 128-151.
  • McCarthy, I., Lawrence, T., Wixted, B. and Gordon, B. (2010) ‘Multidimensional Conceptualization of Environmental Velocity’ Academy of Management Review. Vol. 35, No. 4, 604–626.