Technology adoption, innovation policy and catching-up

Juan Ricardo Perilla Jimenez & Thomas Ziesemer


A model is proposed where economic growth is driven by innovation along the diffusion and adoption of technology from the frontier. Business innovation investments are related to households savings, which generates equilibria with low levels of, and equilibria with high levels of, innovation. Low-level equilibria are unstable. Starting from a position with low levels of investment and innovation, increasing investments are associated with high but decreasing dependence on international technology diffusion. A major objective of policy-making is to increase investment sufficiently in the lower end to reach the high level steady state. An economic rationale is provided for the existence of productivity improving equilibria, where distance to frontier countries is reduced owing to a tax and subsidy mechanism designed to boost innovation.

Keywords: Dynamic Optimization, Equilibrium Analysis, Technology Diffusion, Innovation Policy, Economic Growth

JEL Classification: C62, O33, O38, O40

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