This paper seeks to assess the potentials of countries to grasp value from nanoscience and nanotechnology (N&N) opportunities as reflected in the crucial, but mostly overlooked, field of micro and nanofabrication technologies. N&N potentials are assessed relative to the paths along which the nano knowledge structures are being channelled. Conceptually, this is visualised in terms of the interplay between the patterns of nano competence building for relevant countries and the paths of nano knowledge evolution. Hereby, higher N&N potentials are expected to ensue the closer both aspects follow each other. To analyse the case, this research makes use of intensive bibliometric and social network methods based on scientific publications. A series of implications for policy makers and researchers on the critical role of micro and nanofabrication technologies within the N&N field will be described in this paper.
Keywords: micro and nanofabrication, knowledge evolution, competence-building, emerging technologies, bibliometrics/scientometrics.