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— TECHNOLOGY PLANNING Workshop — Nairobi, 24-27/02/2009 ‘Lessons from emerging Asian countries’ Dr.-Ing. Yves M. Lamour Consultant, Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) Executive Director, Pan-African Institute for Technology & Development (PAITD) I. INTRODUCTION
— TECHNOLOGY PLANNING Workshop —Nairobi, 24-27/02/2009
‘Lessons from emerging Asian countries’
Dr.-Ing. Yves M. Lamour
Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA)
Pan-African Institute for Technology & Development (PAITD)
a. Address of UNECA’s Executive Secretary, Mr. Abdoulie Janneh
to the AU- Summit on Science & Technology in Addis Ababa, on 23-30 Jan. 2007.
Assumption:Economic planning would take care of all the variables necessary for facilitating growth and progressive economic change.
>> Thus need for ‘Technology Planning’!
Economic development is possible!
– Overcoming all known constraints…
Thus, African countries can do it too!
– But how?
– What can we learn from the Asian successes?What characterises the Asian economic wonder? What are the drivers?
– Are the Asian successes transferable to Africa?
Factor 1:Independent and assertive approach
—> thinking out of the Box!
Priority: Responsibility towards their people!
>> Follow-up with plan and bold/decisive action.
— Study cases: Taiwan, Korea, Singapore, China.
Factor 3:Government-private sector linkages
1980/1990, establishment of an R&D Consortium — with focus on technological learning
Besides, Government developed a flexible and adjusted incentive system to support ‘industry champions’
From 1991, Government has encouraged the formation of clusters of industrial firms
— “Development is socio-economic empowerment!” —
With development of low-technologies and on capacity building (building on the existing base)
Development of high-technology capacities.
a) Technical dimension —
>> Inspiring examples:
— Grameen Bank, Bangladesh;
— Instituto del Tercer Mundo, Chile
— Federation des Groupements NAAM, Burkina Faso
— Green Belt Movement, Kenya.
— for the welfare of all
Noticeable inspirational effects on African governments:
“Technological transfers cannot take place between governments for the simple reason that most of the technology available in the developed countries is in private hands. The big concerns have their own R&D departments and this is where most of the action is. The private firms cannot give away their technology or discoveries freely because they are in business and not charity. Under these circumstances, technological transfers are not easy. We must, therefore, endeavour to create our own research capacity in Africa.
”Our research must be problem solving-oriented; it must be relevant to our needs and not esoteric, merely satisfying the intellectual curiosity of our scientists. Both governments and industries, which consume the research results, must chip in to support research and development. The manufacturers must, to some extent, dictate the kind of research done because we shall rely on them to transform research into products that our people can readily use…”
“…The UN recently recommended  that in order for the developing countries to realize any results from research and development, they must spend, at least 2 per cent of their GNP on research. What we are now doing is underdosing the patient. This cannot cure the patient, it merely prolongs misery. It is therefore crucial that in our national budgets, we reconsider the importance of research and development in our future struggle for emancipation from our socio-economic backwardness.”
“ We in Africa must either begin to build
our scientific and technological training capabilities
or remain an impoverished appendage to the global economy.”
Rwanda: Boosted expenditures on science to 1.6% of GDP, striving for 3% within the next 5 years
5. Ethiopia: Programme for producing 5,000 PhDs in 10 years by Addis Ababa University
6. Zambia: will offer postgraduate fellowships to train 300 science and engineering students, with a US$ 30 million loan from the ADB
7. Nigeria: Plans to invest US$ 5 billion to create a National Science Foundation
8. Angola and Mozambique: Brazil’s Pro-Africa Program, in support to scientific and technological capacity building.