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Acting as an innovation niche seeder:how can the reverse salient of southeast Asian economies be overcome?

Hsien-Chen Lo (), Ching-Yan Wu () and Mei-Chih Hu ()
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Hsien-Chen Lo: National Tsing Hua University
Ching-Yan Wu: National Tsing Hua University
Mei-Chih Hu: National Tsing Hua University

Journal of Evolutionary Economics, 2020, vol. 30, issue 4, No 11, 1195-1217

Abstract: Abstract Taking Southeast Asian emerging economies as an empirical case, this study explores how the reverse salients that have emerged during the transitional process may be overcome efficiently and effectively. In particular, three action-oriented case studies derived from a heuristic research approach are presented to show how Taiwan is empowering its universities and public research institutes to act as innovation niche seeders for Southeast Asian economies, thereby compensating for the weakness of their socio-technical systems (i.e. the reverse salients). Presently, the government-led policies of Southeast Asian countries are largely oriented towards incentivizing foreign multinational corporations to lead the development of domestic production networks. This strategy allows these countries to acquire the necessary resources for an economic transition in the era of digitalization, although at the expense of developing their own innovation niches. This study presents the urgency of a need for a new approach, and a new avenue for emerging countries to develop an effective and efficient governance model. The proposed model would allow external institutional mechanisms, such as universities and public research institutes, to act as critical intermediaries providing an alternative solution for the dilemmas faced by small and medium-sized enterprise-centric emerging countries. Policy implications for building sustainable socio-technical regimes in Southeast Asia’s transitional emerging countries are also discussed.

Keywords: Southeast Asia; Reverse salient; Socio-technical regime; Innovation niche; Taiwan; O33; O14; I23; O25; L52; F23 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2020
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DOI: 10.1007/s00191-020-00685-5

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