Issues in Technology/knowledge Transfer/Exchange Between Developed and Developing Countries
Successful technology transfer from developed to developing countries can improve the lives of many and spur economic growth. It is known that technology transfer is a great issue of concern for companies, educational institutions and governments. Developing countries are in need of new and matured technologies to help them compete in the global market place but this cannot be accomplished without properly planned knowledge and technology transfer processes put in place. Over the years developed countries of the world have invested millions of dollars to achieve technology transfer through government funded research & development (R&D) projects, universities, private and public companies for commercialization. Developing countries on the other hand have been busy trying to adopt matured technologies instead of the transfer of technologies to expand and produce new innovative products and solutions.
During my research, I find out that one of the keys to delivering the most competitive advantage to companies or governments in developing countries pursuing a knowledge or technology transfer strategy lies in the ability to unlock tacit knowledge from the donating company or government. “Tacit knowledge is very difficult to quantify but can be transferred if an only if there is appropriate communication and trust between the parties involve” Li-Hua (2009). Developing countries like Senegal, Kenya, Colombia, Indonesia and Ghana has been able to successfully transfer technologies through the migration and development of native skilled workers with industry experience from developed countries, foreign direct investments, and joint ventures in R&D projects.
The first section of this paper will review literature on technology and knowledge transfer, methods & channels of transfer. Section two will provide excerpts of successfully technology transfer case studies followed by section three which will address the relationship of technology transfer to R&D and innovation strategies, the pros and cons of technology transfer, and the process of technology transfer between developed and developing countries, and its implications for firms. The final section will suggest methods for a successful technology transfer process and make recommendations to stake holders of developing countries.