Academic journal article South Asian Journal of Management

Managing Technology Transfer: An Analysis of Intrinsic Factors

Academic journal article South Asian Journal of Management

Managing Technology Transfer: An Analysis of Intrinsic Factors

Article excerpt

INTRODUCTION

The prosperity of the country or, economic growth in true sense, depends on the degree of exploitation of technology for production. Exploitation of technology again depends on the stock of technology, the organization or the country possesses and capability to import technology. Mansfield (1975) pointed out, "One of the fundamental processes that influence the economic performance of nations and firms is technology transfer. Economists have long recognized that the transfer of technology is at the heart of the process of economic growth and that the progress of both developed and developing countries depend on the extent and efficiency of such transfer". Technology transfer is a shortcut to development. It also helps the late entrants to reduce the technology gap quickly (ECOSOC, 2014). Various authors have suggested that economic progress is affected due to barriers in technology adoption. "Differences in international income are the consequences of difference in knowledge the individual society applies for the production of goods and services. These differences are primarily due to country specific policies that results in constraints on work practices and on the application of better production methods." (Parente and Prescott, 1994). Walker and Ellis (2000) put forth the importance of technology import or technology transfer in a nice frame of words, stating "Organizational growth, as well as survival is becoming more dependent on innovation, yet no company or organization can hope to have all its required technology to be developed in-house. Thus, at some stage, it will be necessary to import technology."

Although technology transfer seems to be ideal solution for economic growth but the transfer of appropriate technology is quite difficult. Success of technology transfer depends on the right selection of technology and partner as well as on the right method of transfer. In 1993, a report on federal technology transfer in the United States stated that Technology Transfer is a complex topic and has various meanings to different audiences like loss of proprietary technical information to industry, to a competitor a new technology which could be used to increase productivity or introduce a new product (The Office of Technology Assessment, 1993). Technology Transfer can be defined as the process by which technology, knowledge and information developed in one organization for one purpose is applied and utilized in another area in another organization, for another purpose. Technology transfer is so complex and critical that The United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) attempted to develop a "code of conduct" for transfer of technology.

The UNDESA (2008), in its report, has quoted the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Technology Transfer Framework, which defines five key elements for meaningful and effective actions, as "(1) technology needs and needs assessment; (2) technology information; (3) enabling environment; (4) capacity building; and (5) mechanism to facilitate institutional and financial support to technology transfer" (UNDESA, 2008). In fact, it requires much more. Klingner (2008) opines "conceptually, it involves the relationships among information, knowledge, and wisdom. Operationally, it requires the creation and management of knowledge in learning organizations through a knowledge spiral by which individuals' insights and innovations help the organization adapt to changing and challenging environments. On a more global scale, it involves the successful diffusion and adaptation of innovations from their initial context to another region or country to achieve economic, social, political, or environmental goals."

Technology Transfer is structured in three compartments namely: pre-transfer, transfer and post-transfer. The objective in Pre transfer is 'search and mutual identification'. The transferor and transferee will study and analyze the organizational goals, objectives, and strategic plan of each other to reach to a common beneficial association. …

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