Published on 24 March 2022
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How can technology and innovation policy create sophisticated export industries and innovation clusters?

New course explains the theory and practice behind diversification, technology and innovation

The odds of poor or middle-income countries achieving the stardom of the ‘Asian Miracles’ within a generation or two, or even three, are small. Between 1960 and 2014, only 16 developing economies worldwide were able to vault into high-income status, and many of those were fortunate enough to have discovered oil or join the European Union.

Researchers affiliated with the Bennett Institute for Public Policy at the University of Cambridge have identified that those countries that have reached the stardom of the ‘Asian Miracles’ – including Hong Kong SAR, South Korea and Singapore – have in common an approach centred on four A’s: ambition, autonomy, accountability and adaptability.

Making a miracle depends critically on a technological leap early on toward sophisticated industries—mostly in manufacturing—led by domestic firms. The example of the ‘Asian miracles’ in identifying and implementing the three key principles of Technology Innovation Policy, offers a promising roadmap for other countries to emulate on their journeys to economic success,” say Dr Reda Cherif and Dr Fuad Hasanov, both Senior Economists at the International Monetary Fund (IMF).”

Dr Cherif and Dr Hasanov are hosting a new online Executive Education course to introduce a ‘true’ technology and innovation policy – one that succeeds in building sophisticated sectors that fuel high and sustainable economic growth and that ultimately benefit the whole of society. Attendees will learn how to adapt their organisation’s international financial investments and domestic development strategies to create sophisticated export industries and innovation clusters.

Dr Reda Cherif and Dr Fuad Hasanov, both Senior Economists at the International Monetary Fund (IMF), will lead the interactive presentation and workshop sessions and share their international expertise from working with public and private sector organisations worldwide, and co-editing the book, Breaking the Oil Spell, which explores economic diversification in oil exporters.

This half-day course will:

  • Discuss the key principles of a technology and innovation policy, drawing on the lessons from the experience of the Asian Miracles such as Korea, Singapore and other innovative economies.

  • Highlight the challenges that a transition away from fossil fuels will create for oil exporters.

  • Analyse the various strategies available to implement a technology and innovation policy.

  • Emphasise the role of key institutions such as Sovereign Wealth Funds and Development Agencies and the tools they could use to ride the energy transition and build a prosperous future.

Professor Bill Janeway, University of Cambridge will also join the course to deliver a session on how venture capital affects innovation and how the state and Sovereign Wealth Funds could adopt the principles of a Technology Innovation Policy to create startups and foster innovation.

Janeway, dubbed a ‘Theorist-Practitioner’ by the legendary economist Hyman Minsky, has been an active growth equity investor for more than 40 years. As a theorist he is involved with a number of academic institutions, including the Janeway Institute based at the Faculty of Economics, Cambridge.

This course is primarily for policymakers and officials from Sovereign Wealth Funds, Development and Investment Agencies, Pension Funds, Ministries and Central Banks; researchers from think tanks and universities; and decision-makers from the business and financial sector around the world. 

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The views and opinions expressed in this post are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of the Bennett Institute for Public Policy.

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