chapter  5
22 Pages

The impact of specialisation in areas of strong technological opportunity for economic growth

In the previous chapter we have carried out a preliminary analysis of the relationship between specialisation in dynamic technology, export and production fields and the economic performance of countries. The main result that has emerged is the lack of a significant correlation in the 1970s compared with the emergence of a positive correlation between the composition of technological activities and relative national changes in value-added shares over the 1980s. In the same chapter we have also found that the 1980s appear to be characterised by high rates of growth of ICTs. The aim of this chapter is to explore these preliminary results further in the light of neo-Schumpeterian and evolutionary theories of economic growth. In particular, we will focus attention on the role played by technological opportunity in economic growth; neglecting, for the moment, the investigation of the possible linkages between the composition of national activities and economic growth arising from the demand side. At the same time we will move on from a simple correlation analysis into a regression framework, to allow taking into consideration the simultaneous effects of a set of variables that are likely to affect economic growth and to test whether the composition of technological activities has any additional explanatory power. Particular attention will be also devoted to analysing the growth of ICTs and their impact on countries’ performances.