Inderscience Publishers

Global governance of technology: meeting the needs of developing countries

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In 2000, world leaders adopted the United Nations Millennium Declaration in which they pledged to halve, by 2015, the proportion of the world's people earning less than a dollar a day, suffering from hunger and unable to obtain safe drinking water. This paper argues that meeting these targets will entail concerted efforts to raise economic productivity in the developing world and to redirect research and development (R&D) in the industrialised countries to address problems that affect the developing countries. Doing this will require approaches that place science and technology at the centre of development policy in a world that is marked by extreme disparities in the creation of scientific and technical knowledge. Mobilising this knowledge to meet the agricultural, health, communication and environmental needs of developing countries will continue to be one of the most important issues in international relations in the years to come. The paper identifies ways of using the world's scientific and technological knowledge to meet the needs of developing countries. More specifically, it examines linkages among science, technology and development; emerging trends in innovation systems; incentive measures for technological innovation; and how to make technology work for developing countries. The paper examines two categories of measures needed to promote the application of science and technology to development. The first includes measures adopted by developing countries themselves to promote scientific research and technological innovation as a key element in economic development policy. The second includes measures that can be adopted in the industrialised countries to contribute to solving problems in developing countries.

Keywords: biotechnology, developing countries, energy, information technology, innovation, knowledge, pharmaceuticals, policy, science and technology

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