IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Key policy considerations for facilitating low carbon technology transfer to developing countries


  • Ockwell, David G.
  • Watson, Jim
  • MacKerron, Gordon
  • Pal, Prosanto
  • Yamin, Farhana


Based on Phase I of a UK-India collaborative study, this paper analyses two case studies of low carbon technologies--hybrid vehicles and coal-fired power generation via integrated gasification combined cycle (IGCC). The analysis highlights the following six key considerations for the development of policy aimed at facilitating low carbon technology transfer to developing countries: (1) technology transfer needs to be seen as part of a broader process of sustained, low carbon technological capacity development in recipient countries; (2) the fact that low carbon technologies are at different stages of development means that low carbon technology transfer involves both vertical transfer (the transfer of technologies from the R&D stage through to commercialisation) and horizontal transfer (the transfer from one geographical location to another). Barriers to transfer and appropriate policy responses often vary according to the stage of technology development as well as the specific source and recipient country contexts; (3) less integrated technology transfer arrangements, involving, for example, acquisition of different items of plant from a range of host country equipment manufacturers, are more likely to involve knowledge exchange and diffusion through recipient country economies; (4) recipient firms that, as part of the transfer process, strategically aim to obtain technological know-how and knowledge necessary for innovation during the transfer process are more likely to be able to develop their capacity as a result; (5) whilst access to Intellectual Property Rights (IPRs) may sometimes be a necessary part of facilitating technology transfer, it is not likely to be sufficient in itself. Other factors such as absorptive capacity and risks associated with new technologies must also be addressed; (6) there is a central role for both national and international policy interventions in achieving low carbon technology transfer. The lack of available empirical analysis on low carbon technology transfer, coupled with the prominence of the issue within international climate negotiations, suggests an urgent need for further research effort in this area.

Suggested Citation

  • Ockwell, David G. & Watson, Jim & MacKerron, Gordon & Pal, Prosanto & Yamin, Farhana, 2008. "Key policy considerations for facilitating low carbon technology transfer to developing countries," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 36(11), pages 4104-4115, November.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:enepol:v:36:y:2008:i:11:p:4104-4115

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Nelson, Richard R & Pack, Howard, 1999. "The Asian Miracle and Modern Growth Theory," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 109(457), pages 416-436, July.
    2. Worrell, Ernst & van Berkel, Rene & Fengqi, Zhou & Menke, Christoph & Schaeffer, Roberto & O. Williams, Robert, 2001. "Technology transfer of energy efficient technologies in industry: a review of trends and policy issues," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 29(1), pages 29-43, January.
    3. Hekkert, Marko P. & Hendriks, Franka H. J. F. & Faaij, Andre P. C. & Neelis, Maarten L., 2005. "Natural gas as an alternative to crude oil in automotive fuel chains well-to-wheel analysis and transition strategy development," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 33(5), pages 579-594, March.
    4. Ivarsson, Inge & Alvstam, Claes Goran, 2005. "Technology transfer from TNCs to local suppliers in developing countries: A study of AB Volvo's truck and bus plants in Brazil, China, India, and Mexico," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 33(8), pages 1325-1344, August.
    5. McMullan, J. T. & Williams, B. C. & McCahey, S, 2001. "Strategic considerations for clean coal R&D," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 29(6), pages 441-452, May.
    6. Gallagher, Kelly Sims, 2006. "Limits to leapfrogging in energy technologies? Evidence from the Chinese automobile industry," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 34(4), pages 383-394, March.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:enepol:v:36:y:2008:i:11:p:4104-4115. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Dana Niculescu). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.