The Challenges of Technology and Economic Catch-up in Emerging Economies
This chapter looks at the contribution to the innovation capability measurement that is made through innovation surveys. The increased availability of data at the firm level provides new and comprehensive indicators on the accumulation of innovation capabilities. Better understanding of long-term dynamics and the heterogeneity of sectoral trajectories of innovation capabilities sets the stage for adaptable and targeted innovation policy and facilitates new insights on the technology upgrading and economic catch-up mechanics. The chapter presents an approach to assessing innovation capabilities at the national and sectoral levels using composite indicators of output-based innovation modes and illustrates the proposed ideas using the data from the Russian innovation survey. The proposed indicators bring empirical evidence to the discussions of path dependence and gradual change in the technological upgrading studies. Identification of the heterogeneity of innovation capabilities at firm and industry level contributes to a more profound understanding of the upgrading dynamics and helps to draw implications for effective policymaking.
This chapter begins with a brief overview of the current literature on economic growth and innovation, and the process of technology upgrading. It defines the key concepts that will be used throughout the book and sets the stage for the challenges and issues around economic growth that will be addressed in later chapters. It then outlines the contribution of each chapter and the Schumpeterian or neo-Schumpeterian perspective in which they’re framed, and the four major themes that run throughout the book: the relationship between technology capability and economic growth from new methodological angles, including the middle-income trap; technology capability upgrading from structural, sectoral, and micro-level perspectives; the emerging paradigm of technology capability upgrading which is about sustainability, green growth, inclusiveness, and socio-economic and political determinants of technology capability building; and the several dimensions of innovation policy which reflect a state of transition or changing policy philosophies.