Original Articles

Inclusive innovation processes – experiences from Uganda and Tanzania

DOI: 10.1080/20421338.2014.970437
Author(s): Lena TrojerDepartment of Technology and Aesthetics, Sweden, Birgitta RydhagenDepartment of Technology and Aesthetics, Sweden, Tomas KjellqvisttDepartment of Technology and Aesthetics, Sweden

Abstract

It has been well known since the 1960s that developing countries need to improve their capacity to use science and technology and that more efforts must be put into R&D that would benefit poor countries and people. Serious efforts to accomplish this exist but they are still too few and small in relation to the size of the problem. Whilst the supply of knowledge and competent people slowly has been growing, there is still a continued lack of demand for domestic knowledge. Foreign consultants dominate knowledge supply to government, industry and aid donors. Small firms and farms are not used to articulate their demand for knowledge. Such weak demand and timid articulation are typical signs of emerging innovations systems. Despite this, there are signs of a fragmented domestic creative potential that could be mobilised to increase innovation for inclusive development. In this article, practical experiences in Uganda and Tanzania illuminate possibilities to articulate and address the knowledge demand from firms and farms through cluster formation. In this type of cluster formations, universities have key roles as knowledge providers and as intermediaries that assist in building the ties and linkages necessary to move the innovation system to a higher state.

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