A Cross-Cultural and Institutional Approach
Edited by Kate Hutchings and Kavoos Mohannak
Chapter 8: Mauritius: Towards a Knowledge Hub and Society
Mehraz Boolaky, Mridula Gungaphul and David Weir INTRODUCTION Knowledge is believed by many to be the driving force in today’s economy (Bollinger and Smith, 2001). If this is accepted, then it is necessary for an economy to find ways of accessing existing knowledge and creating new knowledge if it desires to prosper and sustain prosperity. In this endeavour, Dosi and Malerba (1996) discuss the importance of an organisation’s ability to learn, that is the willingness of members of the organisation to participate fully in the learning process to build and share knowledge. Countries need to recognise knowledge as a most valuable resource and develop mechanisms for tapping into the collective intelligence and skills of its human assets to draw maximum benefits from the unreserved participation of the whole population. Commonly known as the Star and Key of the Indian Ocean, Mauritius is an island of about 1865 square kilometres with a multiracial population of about 1 230 000 inhabitants in 2005. Mauritius is widely cited as a model of economic and social development and in particular, an island of immigrants par excellence (History of Mauritius, 2001). This recent history is surprising and worthy of respect because of the parlous economic and social situation of the island state when it achieved independence in 1968. Its dependence on the monoculture of the basic commodity of sugar, its isolation from the major world markets and its rampant demographic explosion made it, in the eyes of many expert commentators, more likely to become an...
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