Technological Innovation In Chile Where We Are and What Can be Done
The aim of this paper is to characterize the current Chilean scientific and technological status from an economic point of view. Given its present level of economic development, major weaknesses are observed in the National System of Innovation. Among them, scarce resources devoted to R&D expressed as a proportion of GDP, low participation of professionals and scientific workforce in research activities and negligible private involvement in financing these activities. We discuss the fundamental role of the public sector in the active promotion of these activities, especially at universities and private firms. In particular, we explore different economic policies aimed at enhancing the participation of the private sector in R&D activities. Revising the Chilean situation, we suggest that although many current programs aimed at supporting research activities are solving most of the typical market failures associated with R&D and innovation, we diagnose that there is a lack of coordination between allexisting initiatives. There is a systemic failure. Based on international experience, we suggest that by designing an explicit technology policy at the national level this failure could be solved. A technology board that gives directions, priorities, rules and performs periodic evaluations, may increase the economic efficiency of public resources devoted to these fundamental activities.
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