Appropriate Technology and Economic Development of Emerging Economies – A Myth or a Reality
Keywords:Appropriate Technology, Emerging Economies, Technology Transfer, Dual Economy
The appropriateness of technology being purchased, transferred, and used by emerging economies has been an issue raised at different world forums and discussed with no appreciable change in the state of affairs. However there are changes occurring due to the innovative ways in which the same technology is put to use resulting in products that have found easy acceptance amongst the users. This development questions the premise on which appropriateness of technology is judged. The paper reviews the existing literature on appropriate technology and makes an attempt to identify the characteristics of an appropriate technology and validates these characteristics through the case study approach. The research points out two different facets of use of technology, one in which high technology and the products based on it are adopted without any modification and accepted too. The other is the use of high technology to develop products that are appropriate but are very different from the products for which the high technology was initially developed. Whether the technology is high or basic should not be a debatable issue, but technology that finds acceptance in the emerging economies becomes appropriate. Only those technologies have found acceptance, which take into consideration the economic, cultural, and environmental conditions prevailing in these emerging economies. The findings and the conclusions of the paper have implications for the policy makers as well as business enterprises of not only emerging economies but also of industrialized countries.
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