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Pathways to Inclusive Development through Innovation, Technology and Structural Change

Technology and innovation can drive economic growth, help solve social and environmental problems, and reduce poverty. All countries need to develop the capacity to produce and use science and technology themselves and adapt knowledge to their needs and contexts. While industrial upgrading through technology transfer has favoured structural change, it has often resulted in insufficient development of local innovation capacity and it can increase marginalization. Alternatively, technology transfer projects that emphasize more inclusive innovation can also fail to achieve large-scale change. What is needed is a better understanding of the pathways that lead to technological innovation and build appropriate capacities within developing countries to create inclusive growth and poverty reduction at scale. This research project will develop a framework to understand how countries can exploit innovation that leads to both structural change and economic inclusion. It will map alternative pathways that link different forms of technological innovation, structural change, and inclusion in low-income countries. A second phase (following this project) may involve further data collection and field research on innovation pathways in practice and the conditions under which they can lead to inclusive innovation. The project involves the Institute of Development Studies (IDS) and the Science Policy Research Unit (SPRU), both at the University of Sussex in the UK, working in collaboration with researchers in Africa and Asia.

Project ID
Project Status
End Date
12 months
IDRC Officer
David O'Brien
Total Funding
CA$ 175,000.00
North of Sahara
South of Sahara
Central Asia
South Asia
Far East Asia
Foundations for Innovation
Foundations for Innovation
Institution Country
United Kingdom
Project Leader
Jodie Thorpe
Institute of Development Studies GB