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Building a prosperous future: Diversification, technology and innovation

This event has now passed.

09/05/2022 | 9:00 - 14:15 (BST)

An Executive Education course with IMF senior economists and a University of Cambridge Professor discussing a technology and innovation policy to ride the energy transition and build a prosperous future.

Disruptive technologies in transportation and energy generation along with the potentially colossal economic and social costs from climate change are accelerating the transition away from fossil fuels.

This Executive Education course will introduce attendees to a technology and innovation policy that will enable them to adapt both their international financial investments and domestic development strategies to create sophisticated export industries and innovation clusters.

The course will be delivered by two of the Bennett Institute’s affiliated researchers, Dr Reda Cherif and Dr Fuad Hasanov, both of whom are Senior Economists at the International Monetary Fund (IMF) while Dr Hasanov is also an adjunct Professor of Economics at Georgetown University. Their research covers development economics, natural resources, growth and innovation, and industrial policy. Together with Dr Min Zhu, former Deputy Managing Director at the IMF, they are the editors of Breaking the Oil Spell, which examines economic diversification in oil-exporting countries.

For the final panel session, Dr Cherif and Dr Hasanov will be joined by Professor Bill Janeway. Professor 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 at Cambridge University.

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.
Who should attend?

This course is aimed primarily at 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.


Lecture One: Energy transition, the role of the state, and the urgency to start diversifying
This session will explore the implications of the ongoing energy transition on oil exporters, what has been achieved so far in terms of diversification, and what has been missing in terms of policies. The diversification lessons will be discussed, and the role of the state will be examined. The case to reappraise the concept of economic diversification and the urgency to start it immediately will be made.

Workshop One: Designing a diversification strategy, Part One
This workshop will provide a case study to analyze elements of a diversification strategy. Participants will analyze the data and propose potential sectors.


Lecture Two: Technology and innovation for sustained growth
This session will show evidence that to achieve (or maintain) high-income status, domestic technology creation and innovation are paramount.  It will discuss technology and innovation policies and the key principles to succeed. The experiences of innovative economies will be examined to illustrate successful strategies and the policies to implement them.

Workshop Two: Designing a diversification strategy, Part Two
This workshop will explore strategies and examine institutions to drive the strategy.


Panel discussion: The state as a venture capitalist
Professor Janeway will examine how venture capital affects innovation and how the state and Sovereign Wealth Funds could adopt this model to create startups and foster innovation.

The session will close with a panel discussion, summarizing key elements of the course and providing key takeaways.


This workshop will be delivered online via Zoom through a range of interactive sessions and activities.


Book your place via the University of Cambridge Online Store or contact us to organise other payment options.



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