It is not necessary to state the argument in terms of economic stages to acknowledge that technological change is one of the strongest forces affecting the speed and course of economic growth and development. Few economists would challenge that position.* What is more, today economists are inclined to think that their science is of immediate relevance when it comes to investigating technological change itself:

By the middle of the 1950s evidence had accumulated which strongly suggested two things: that technological change is a major - many economists would argue the major - determinant of the economic growth of rapidly growing economies, and that the forces shaping technological change are, at least to a very large extent, economic,

558 Resistance to Innovation

and therefore far from being an exogenous variable, it can be examined and understood directly in terms of economic analysis.4