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Innovation and the Development Agenda

image of Innovation and the Development Agenda

Innovation drives long-term economic growth. It has a crucial role to play as global economies recover from the current financial crisis. This book examines the role of innovation in developing countries, with a focus on Africa. It investigates innovation systems and their application; the key role of knowledge in innovation for development; and the importance of comparable country studies and official statistics on innovation. It stresses the need for innovation to become part of a comprehensive development agenda, and makes recommendations for promoting activities in both the formal and informal sectors, with the aim of transforming agriculture into a knowledge-based industry capable of stimulating economic growth.

Innovation and the Development Agenda is an important component of the overall OECD Innovation Strategy, which seeks to create stronger and more sustainable growth, while addressing the key global challenges of the 21st century. It is also part of the Innovation, Technology, and Society programme of IDRC.  For more information about the OECD Innovation Strategy, see www.oecd.org/innovation/strategy. For more information on IDRC programmes see www.idrc.ca.

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Innovation Strategies in Developing Countries

This chapter explores issues relating to innovation strategies in developing countries. By flagging some key issues in the literature, it identifies the many dimensions of innovation strategies in developing countries and examines the implications for different developing regions. It suggests that innovation strategies that are shaped by domestic market and policy realities are more robust and help to improve the performance of enterprises at country level. As countries differ in their challenges, resources and needs, their policy and development frameworks necessarily vary considerably. This chapter draws some tentative conclusions from the literature, which suggests that strategies based on innovation systems are, to some extent, replicable.

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