This article discusses strategies and options for enhancing the flexibility of technological systems. Flexibility of technological systems is increasingly required because of uncertainties and fast developments, for example regarding environmental issues. The central questions of this paper are: how can actors create the possibility of change with regard to technological systems that are deeply embedded in society, and how should they take flexibility into account in the development and implementation of new technologies? PVC technology is taken as a case study. Because of its embeddedness in society and in industrial structures PVC technology is highly inflexible. The uncertainties that underlie the ongoing debate between protagonists of PVC and protagonists of alternative technological options underline the need for taking flexibility into account.

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Keywords Flexibility, Lock-in, PVC, Supply chains
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Journal Technovation
Knot, E.A.R, van den Ende, J.C.M, & Vergragt, P.J. (2001). Flexibility strategies for sustainable technology development. Technovation, 21(6), 335–343. doi:10.1016/S0166-4972(00)00049-3