Challenging the Supply-side Vision of the Long Run
Edited by Mark Setterfield
1 Pascal Petit and Luc Soete A PERIOD OF ÔTRANSITIONÕ WITH LASTING EFFECTS? Over the past two decades, major structural changes have affected the growth process in developed economies. A cluster of radically new information and communication technologies (ICTs) has emerged, accompanied by the internationalization of markets, financial capital and production processes, and the transformation of work in general and the structure of the labour force in particular. Such changes have both transitory and longer-lasting effects, and only through experience and learning will economic agents ultimately adjust their behaviours to the demands of the new environment. Learning processes exist at various levels: within the technology-adopting firm, where efficient use of new technologies is heavily dependent on other users (subcontractors, customers or other firms and partners); among technology producers, who must adjust equipment to meet different user needs and confront different national technical standards; and among consumers, where cultural barriers slow the diffusion of new ÔpracticesÕ in some cases, and erect barriers to access in others. This nexus of only loosely related learning processes lends credence to the assumption made by Freeman and Soete (1987) and David (1991) that transitions from one technological system to another may be long drawn out.2 But we should also be aware that all transitional periods have historically specific features that can condition final outcomes (Amendola and Gaffard, 1988). Schumpeterian evolutionary theory (Nelson and Winter, 1982, Dosi et al., 1988; Arthur, 1989) stresses that adjustment paths may be irreversible, and that the evolutionary nature of long-run...
You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.
Elgaronline requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books or journals. Please login through your library system or with your personal username and password on the homepage.
Non-subscribers can freely search the site, view abstracts/ extracts and download selected front matter and introductory chapters for personal use.
Your library may not have purchased all subject areas. If you are authenticated and think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.