Title: Social capitalism: an economic paradigm for the transfer and commercialisation of technology
Author: Woodrow W. Clark, Xing Li
Address: Energy Reliability, Office of Planning and Research, Governor's Office, 1400 Tenth Street, Sacramento, CA 95814, USA. Energy Reliability, Office of Planning and Research, Governor's Office, 1400 Tenth Street, Sacramento, CA 95814, USA
Journal: Int. J. of Technology Transfer and Commercialisation, 2004 Vol.3, No.1, pp.1 - 11
Abstract: A new economic paradigm has emerged over the last 30 years, mainly in a few European countries, especially the Nordic countries over the last ten years, some states within the USA and the People's Republic of China: social capitalism. The core issues of this new form of economic system were exposed in the US 2000 election, which pitted the forces of the ''old economic paradigm'' against the ''new economic paradigm''. These issues are poised to repeat themselves in the USA in 2002 and again in 2004. The conflict is represented in the political economy of both party candidates as a dramatic move from the old economy of the 1980 era of Margaret Thatcher and Ronald Reagan toward a more compassionate government and economic model. Due to the selection of the US president by the American Supreme Court, the old economy forces ''won'' the White House. Nevertheless, the elements and forces of the new economy are pervasive and well established in many American states. What the new economy ''social capitalism'' paradigm argues is that government is not invisible, as in the Adam Smith ideal ''free market'' form of capitalism. Nor is government all intrusive, as with Keynes or even Schumpeter. Instead, government must be active and protect societal issues that impact on every citizen in all sectors that have an impact on an economy: education, infrastructure, health, water, energy, and the environment. Government's role is to provide guidance through regulation and to stimulate business and economic growth through investment. More recently (2002), the revelations of the excesses and abuses of a ''free market'' by private corporations, such as Enron in the USA, demonstrate the need for an active government role in business development and operations in critical infrastructure sectors. This paper examines not only the philosophical roots of social capitalism, but also gives short business cases of how business development can be enhanced through the transfer and commercialisation of energy and environmental technologies. Our premise is that, if nations are to advance then they must share in the commercialisation of knowledge capital, innovations, and new business developments for the benefit of everyone. Competition must be replaced by collaboration.
Keywords: social capitalism; commercial transfer of knowledge and technology.