Munich Personal RePEc Archive

Science, technology and innovation for economic competitiveness: the role of smart specialization in less-developed countries.

Krammer, Sorin M.S. (2015): Science, technology and innovation for economic competitiveness: the role of smart specialization in less-developed countries. Forthcoming in: Technological Forecasting and Social Change No. forthcoming (2017)

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Abstract

Smart specialization (SS) is a policy concept that has gained significant momentum in Europe despite a frail theoretical background and implementation difficulties. These challenges become critical in the case of less-developed economies that often lack regional autonomy, a strong STI base, and local capabilities to identify and sustain such SS strategies. Combining elements from evolutionary economics and the export-led literature, I propose a framework that anchors the role of SS in the national innovation policy of such laggards, as a complementary avenue for improving competitiveness and growth. Moreover, to assist policy makers in lagging regions or countries, I advance a diagnostic tool to identify potential areas for SS, and also address the systemic and the regional-sectoral bottlenecks in these domains. I exemplify the use of this tool in the case of Bulgaria by using a large battery of quantitative and qualitative indicators from publicly available data. This type of investigation may be useful for other less-developed economies to kick-start this process and identify prima facie SS candidates.

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