n African Journal of Science, Technology, Innovation and Development - Special issue : Innovation research and economic development in Africa - : introduction

Volume 6, Issue 5
  • ISSN : 2042-1338
  • E-ISSN: 2042-1346
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The volume of the literature on innovation policy studies in Africa is in comparative regional perspective relatively low although the region embraced the idea of Science and Technology as a force for development over three decades ago. Due in large part to the pre-existing weak scientific infrastructure in most African countries and in particular the poorer countries of Africa, the region's contribution has been limited in innovation studies so far (Lorentzen and Mohamed 2009). However, as with other regions - at the academic, policy and political levels - African countries are increasingly adopting the 'systems approach' to innovation. This is reflected in the increasing attention in the scholarly debate over economic development in Africa (Muchie et al. 2003, Hounkonnou et al. 2012, Kingiri 2011, Oyelaran-Oyeyinka 2006, Oyelaran and McCormick 2007). Over the last ten years, the systems approach has also received increasing attention from national policy makers in Africa as well as from donors and international organisations such as the OECD, the World Bank, UNCTAD and UNIDO. Many of these organisations fund activities aimed at supporting the promotion of innovation systems while there has also been scholarly collaboration in articulating continental STI programmes.

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