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The Roles of Research at Universities and Public Labs in Economic Catch-up

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  • Roberto Mazzoleni
  • Richard R. Nelson

Abstract

We draw upon historical evidence from several countries and contemporary studies of national innovation systems to argue that indigenous systems of academic training and public research have been in the past important elements of the institutional structures supporting a country’s economic catch up. Recent changes in the international economic environment, and the growing scientific basis for contemporary technologies, will make those systems even more important in the future. The contributions of universities and public labs to the development of indigenous technological capabilities have taken different forms in different countries and economic sectors. However, we note that, in contrast with current emphasis on university-based embryonic inventions and fundamental research, effective research programs have predominantly occurred in the application-oriented sciences and engineering, and have been oriented towards problem-solving, and the advancement of technologies of interest to a well-defined user-community.

Suggested Citation

  • Roberto Mazzoleni & Richard R. Nelson, 2006. "The Roles of Research at Universities and Public Labs in Economic Catch-up," LEM Papers Series 2006/01, Laboratory of Economics and Management (LEM), Sant'Anna School of Advanced Studies, Pisa, Italy.
  • Handle: RePEc:ssa:lemwps:2006/01
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    1. Klevorick, Alvin K. & Levin, Richard C. & Nelson, Richard R. & Winter, Sidney G., 1995. "On the sources and significance of interindustry differences in technological opportunities," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 24(2), pages 185-205, March.
    2. Lee, Dal Hwan & Bae, Zong-Tae & Lee, Jinjoo, 1991. "Performance and adaptive roles of the government-supported research institute in South Korea," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 19(10), pages 1421-1440, October.
    3. Nelson, Richard R. & Sampat, Bhaven N., 2001. "Making sense of institutions as a factor shaping economic performance," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 44(1), pages 31-54, January.
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    Cited by:

    1. Franco Malerba & Richard R. Nelson (ed.), 2012. "Economic Development as a Learning Process," Books, Edward Elgar Publishing, number 14616, April.
    2. repec:fgv:epgrbe:v:66:n:1:a:6 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Márcia Siqueira Rapini & Eduardo da Motta e Albuquerque & Leandro Alves Silva & Sara Gonçalves Antunes de Souza & Hérica Morais Righi & Wellington Marcelo Silva da Cruz, 2006. "Spots of interaction: an investigation on the relationship between firms and universities in Minas Gerais, Brazil," Textos para Discussão Cedeplar-UFMG td286, Cedeplar, Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais.
    4. Wang, Yuandi & Zhou, Zhao, 2013. "The dual role of local sites in assisting firms with developing technological capabilities: Evidence from China," International Business Review, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 63-76.
    5. Leonardo Costa Ribeiro & Ricardo Machado Ruiz & Américo Tristão Bernardes & Eduardo da Motta e Albuquerque, 2008. "Matrices of science and technology interactions: implications for development," Textos para Discussão Cedeplar-UFMG td333, Cedeplar, Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais.
    6. Anna Nilsson & Annika Rickne & Lars Bengtsson, 2010. "Transfer of academic research: uncovering the grey zone," The Journal of Technology Transfer, Springer, vol. 35(6), pages 617-636, December.
    7. Quatraro, Francesco, 2006. "Innovating Routines and Routinizing Invention: A Study on the Diffusion of Patent Applications in Italian Regions, 1981-2001," Department of Economics and Statistics Cognetti de Martiis LEI & BRICK - Laboratory of Economics of Innovation "Franco Momigliano", Bureau of Research in Innovation, Complexity and Knowledge, Collegio 200606, University of Turin.
    8. Chiarini, Tulio & Vieira, Karina Pereira, 2012. "Universidades como produtoras de conhecimento para o desenvolvimento econômico: sistema superior de ensino e as políticas de CT&I," Revista Brasileira de Economia - RBE, FGV/EPGE - Escola Brasileira de Economia e Finanças, Getulio Vargas Foundation (Brazil), vol. 66(1), March.
    9. Quatraro, Francesco, 2006. "Mind the Gap: Convergence of Technology and Technology of Convergence in Italian Regions, 1982-2001," Department of Economics and Statistics Cognetti de Martiis LEI & BRICK - Laboratory of Economics of Innovation "Franco Momigliano", Bureau of Research in Innovation, Complexity and Knowledge, Collegio 200603, University of Turin.
    10. Mario Cimoli & Giovanni Dosi & Joseph E. Stiglitz, 2008. "The Future of Industrial Policies in the New Millennium: Toward a Knowledge-Centered Development Agenda," LEM Papers Series 2008/19, Laboratory of Economics and Management (LEM), Sant'Anna School of Advanced Studies, Pisa, Italy.
    11. Franco Malerba & Richard R. Nelson, 2012. "Introduction," Chapters,in: Economic Development as a Learning Process, chapter 1 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    12. Franco Malerba & Richard R. Nelson, 2012. "Conclusions," Chapters,in: Economic Development as a Learning Process, chapter 7 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    13. Tüzin Baycan & Roger Stough, 2013. "Bridging knowledge to commercialization: the good, the bad, and the challenging," The Annals of Regional Science, Springer;Western Regional Science Association, vol. 50(2), pages 367-405, April.
    14. World Bank, 2008. "Bulgaria - Investment Climate Assessment : Volume 2. Detailed Report," World Bank Other Operational Studies 7868, The World Bank.

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    Keywords

    Catch-up; Public Research; Indigenous Technological Capabilites;

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