CEPAL Review

Cepal Review is the leading journal for the study of economic and social development issues in Latin America and the Caribbean. Edited by the Economic Commission for Latin America, each issue focuses on economic trends, industrialization, income distribution, technological development and monetary systems, as well as the implementation of economic reform and transfer of technology. Written in English and Spanish (Revista de la Cepal), each tri-annual issue offers approximately 12 studies and essays undertaken by authoritative experts or gathered from conference proceedings.

English Spanish

Science and technology policy and the National Innovation System in Argentina

This article looks at the strengths and weaknesses of the policies proposed in the Argentine National Multi-year Science and Technology Plan, 1998-2000, within the conceptual framework of the National Innovation System (NIS) approach. In the light of a severe diagnosis of the weaknesses of Argentine efforts in this field, the new public policies are designed to promote the interaction of the many agents and institutions involved in those efforts, to change the rules governing the allocation of public resources to research, to promote strategic plans and evaluation mechanisms in public bodies in this field, and to induce greater voluntary spending by the private sector through fiscal credits for technological research and development and a Technological Advisers Programme, in order to give better attention to the demands of small and medium-sized enterprises. However, there are very profound and severe shortcomings in the ability of the Argentine financial system to provide finance for longterm investments in intangible assets, in the capacity of the educational system to link up with the needs of the production sector, and in the ability of the scientific institutions to interact with the educational system and the production sector. Although these shortcomings are mentioned in the Plan, they are not given the amount of attention needed to begin to reverse them. The long and frustrating past history of science and technology policies in the country, which have registered more failures than successes, and the partial success of the laissez-faire policy applied in the 1990s, which was considered to be a good policy by most of domestic and foreign big business, militate against the success of the initiatives under way. At the same time, and in spite of its stimulating suggestions, the approach taken by the NIS reflects serious ambiguities in its normative and conceptual aspects which limit its practical applicability.

English Spanish

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