The National Technology System Framework: Sanjaya Lall’s Contribution to Appreciative Theory

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Mammo Muchie
Angathevar Baskaran


Sanjaya Lall has grappled with the dilemmas of development
by concentrating his life-long research on technology, international trade,
manufacturing and industrial development largely but not exclusively in the
developing world. He constructed taxonomy on low technology; resource
based products, medium technology intensive and high tech intensive
products and tried to measure the challenges, opportunities and difficulties
for resource based producers like the countries in Sub-Saharan Africa to enter
into medium and high technology intensive manufactures. The rich empirical
work undertaken on the developing economies, South East Asia and others
has led him to formulate the appreciative concept of National Technology
System (NTS). In this paper we distinguish between the development and
relationship between formal and appreciative theories in general and the
NTS and national system of innovation (NSI) concepts in particular. We shall
attempt to examine, compare and contrast broadly Sanjay Lall’s appreciative
NTS concept in relation to the national innovation system approach in the
context of the debate for generating the appropriate and relevant heuristics
to get clearer comprehension of the dynamics and processes involved in
both technology acquisition and efficiency for economic competitiveness
and development.


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