Technology in Developing Economies

Developing countries have experienced an unprecedented level of technological advancement in the past 15 years, propelled by increased foreign trade and investments in human capital. In fact, technological achievement in low- and middle-income nations has increased more rapidly than in high-income countries. Despite this impressive growth, a large gap still remains because the developing world is only in the stages of adopting pre-existing technologies, rather than actively pursuing new innovations (see figure below). In addition, although the diffusion of new technologies is quick between countries, they take much longer to disseminate within a nation. Overall, it will be especially important for governments to consider investing in modern technology to facilitate their country's inclusion in the global economy.

Scientific invention and innovation is almost exclusively a high-income activity

Technological index as a function of national income (World Bank)

by Joe Cackler, Emily Gu, and Mike Rodgers
for CS 201: Computers, Ethics, and Social Responsibility
at Stanford University
on March 17, 2008