Authors: Banji O. Oyeyinka
Addresses: UN-Habitat, United Nations, Gigiri Complex, Nairobi, Kenya
Abstract: Latecomer countries possess varying levels of policy and institutional capacity to make the right kinds of choices that promote development, which explain to a large extent the difficulties they face in transforming knowledge through learning activities to technological capabilities and innovative performance. This paper tries to answer some of the myriad of questions that arise in resolving the development conundrum of the latecomers. For instance, why is access to knowledge not sufficient to promote the use of knowledge? Why is technology transfer not a necessary precondition for technology absorption? Why is public sector research not sufficient to promote product development through the private sector? The answer to most of these very basic, often-assumed-to-be-given, constraints lies in the nature of, and the capacity of formal and informal institutions that underlie innovation in latecomer countries. I suggest that one of the causes of this failure is the lack of an institutional base for innovation that builds on local and contextual factors.
Keywords: latecomer countries; institutional capacity; knowledge transformation; learning activities; technological capabilities; innovative performance; technology transfer; technology absorption; knowledge access; knowledge promotion; public sector; product development; private sector; constraints; formal institutions; informal institutions; local factors; contextual factors; technological learning; technological innovation; technological development; development policies; R&D; research and development.
International Journal of Technological Learning, Innovation and Development, 2012 Vol.5 No.1/2, pp.83 - 110
Available online: 13 Jan 2012 *Full-text access for editors Access for subscribers Purchase this article Comment on this article