Innovation Systems for Development

Innovation Systems for Development

Making Research and Innovation in Developing Countries Matter

Edited by Bo Göransson, Claes Brundenius and Carlos Aguirre-Bastos

The rise and expansion of organized scientific research has led individuals to become accustomed to an unceasing delivery of new scientific results and technical improvements that resolve even seemingly unsolvable problems. This timely book examines how science-based research and innovation is designed, implemented and applied in developing countries in support of development and poverty alleviation. The expert contributors trace and compare the emergence of national innovation systems (NIS) in four developing countries – Bolivia, Mozambique, Tanzania and Vietnam. Dedicated chapters on each country identify the main structural and organizational problems for improving the relevance and quality of research output for the productive sector, and conclude by offering suggestions on how the process of applying research outputs and innovations in support of development goals can be improved.

Chapter 8: Making research matter: a synthesis of survey findings

Bo Göransson

Subjects: development studies, development economics, economics and finance, development economics, economics of innovation, innovation and technology, economics of innovation


The four case countries examined in this book differ substantially in terms of size, level of economic development, industry structure and market orientation, but they all share the trait of assigning high importance to the efficient utilization of science, technology and innovation (STI) for development. The preceding chapters have illustrated the diversity and heterogeneity of these attempts, but also that the raison d’être for national policies in this area is basically the same; to better align the research that is actually carried out with the developmental needs of the country. In this chapter, we take a closer look at how researchers perceive not only the relevance and quality of their research but also the ability of the national innovation system to put research results into productive use. The empirical data have been collected in a project that started in 2010.1 After extensive discussions with the team leaders of the four case countries, a pilot questionnaire was developed, tested and subsequently revised and translated to the languages of the case countries together with an open-ended discussion manual for semi-structured interviews of researchers, policy makers and private sector decision makers.

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