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Advanced countries have shown an increasing convergence in their economic performance and technological intensity, with a relative decline of the position of the United States and the emergence of the European and Japanese economies. This publication examines the sectoral structure of technological activities, the process of specialisation, and the impact on national performance. Indicators of technology and of scientific activity are examined together with other economic and R&D data and areas of strength and weakness of individual countries. Fields of national effort are described and those of greater innovative dynamism where patenting has grown most rapidly are studied. Gradually countries have concentrated their technological efforts in the fields of their greater strength, under the pressure of increasing international competition and the proprietary nature of know-how. Conversely, in science the degree of specialisation has decreased, with countries entering new fields of research, taking advantage of the open flow of scientific knowledge. For science and technology policy, it is suggested that national efforts be combined with the growing international integration. The aims of maintaining established areas of strength and of developing new specialisations in emerging fields should be balanced, and a more selective policy at the sectoral level is suggested.

Additional information

Authors: ARCHIBUGI D, Istituto di Studi sulla Ricerca e Documentazione Scientifica (ISRDS), National Research Council, Roma (IT);PIANTA M, Istituto di Studi sulla Ricerca e Documentazione Scientifica (ISRDS), National Research Council, Roma (IT)
Bibliographic Reference: EUR 13188 EN (1992) 164 pp.
Availability: Kluwer Academic Publishers Group, P.O. Box 322, 3300 AH Dordrecht (NL)
ISBN: ISBN 0-7923-1750-5
Record Number: 199211388 / Last updated on: 1994-11-29
Original language: en
Available languages: en
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