sydneyrx2014.com Online ED Drugstore is an 1st. pharmacy providing a personal service to the society in Australia. Over 50,000 extremely satisfied buyers! We're your prescription drug store cialis australia and have provided trusted service to families in Australia for over 15 years.

Knowledge and inequality

Knowledge and Inequality

1) Introduction
“Knowledge is like light. Weightless and intangible, it can easily travel the world, enlightening the lives of people everywhere. Yet billions of people still live in the darkness of poverty - unnecessarily. Knowledge about how to treat such a simple ailment as diarrhea has existed for centuries - but millions of children continue to die from it because their parents do not know how to save them” (World Bank 1999, 3). This opening sentence of the World Bank's 1998/99 World Development Report, ‘Knowledge for Development’, frames the problem in very simple terms. It seems easy to diffuse knowledge throughout the world, and yet its uneven distribution has dire consequences for those whom it does not reach. In a similar vein the UNESCO World Science Declaration stated: ”Most of the benefits of science are unevenly distributed, as a result of structural asymmetries among countries, regions and social groups, and between the sexes. As scientific knowledge has become a crucial factor in the production of wealth, so its distribution has become more inequitable. What distinguishes the poor (be it people or countries) from the rich is not only that they have fewer assets, but also that they are largely excluded from the creation and the benefits of scientific knowledge” (UNESCO WCS Lack of knowledge puts people at a grave disadvantage. Who suffers from this lack of knowledge? Why is knowledge unevenly distributed throughout the world? What are the obstacles to the seemingly easy diffusion of knowledge? Does knowledge have the same When the World Bank links knowledge and development two assumptions appear as givens: the knowledge referred to is scientific and technical knowledge, and it is believed to be the crucial factor responsible for development, i.e. economic well being and thus quality of life. More precisely, the World Bank speaks about two kinds of knowledge: knowledge about technology or technical knowledge (know-how) and knowledge about attributes, e.g. about the quality of goods. With respect to the former knowledge gaps reflect the unequal distribution across and within countries, with respect to the latter the incomplete knowledge of attributes is termed information problems. Due to the neo-classic credo of the Bank it holds market formation to be the crucial mechanism in development. This perspective is in line with and enhances the secular trend towards globalization. Globalization provides the backdrop against which knowledge gaps and the uneven distribution of knowledge in the world become apparent. It suggests that there is a standard against which all countries can be measured. It may be said that today, inequality in the distribution of knowledge is equivalent to inequality of Ever since the early 1950's and the creation of UNESCO it was recognized that science and technology may have a role in fighting ‘underdevelopment’. Some developing countries (DC), notably Korea, were highly successful in following that strategy. Others made initial progress in investing in science and setting up national research systems. However, their success could not be sustained. Economic crisis and in some cases political turmoil neutralized the early progress. Thus, despite some success stories in recent years the grim news comes from other parts of the world: Especially with respect to sub-Saharan Africa the gap of knowledge inequality is widening. (Within 15 years median Africa lost 25% of its share of world publications; Waast, 2001, 6). The rate of investment in R&D sustained by the industrialized countries (ICs), being manifold that of the less developed countries (LDCs), already gives them an accumulative advantage that borders on a virtual monopoly in scientific and technological knowledge. Meanwhile, the importance of knowledge is steadily growing as modern economies are becoming increasingly knowledge-based. The role model and the reference of successful development for the DC’s are the industrialized countries that by now have shifted to knowledge-based industries and hold a commanding position in the global Thus, once again development (and the issue of inequality) are tied to knowledge. The evidence in support of this position is impressive, indeed. Command of scientific knowledge, a strong role in the production of this knowledge, correlates highly with the economic strength of a country. The G5 nations USA, UK, Canada, Japan and Germany are the strongest contributors to the stock of scientific knowledge, they are also the strongest economies. Together with some smaller countries like Switzerland, Sweden, Holland and Belgium that are also highly productive relative to their population they also have the highest standard of living. At the opposite end of the spectrum are the poorest countries, most of them on the African continent, some in Asia. Their contribution to world scientific knowledge is minuscule or nonexistent, and so is their capacity to participate in scientific communication and, thus, to control technological development. Their economic income is low, their health systems are The issue of knowledge and inequality is exacerbated by two concepts dominating public discourses at least in the industrialized countries and having an impact on political institution building as well as on the leading economies: globalization and the emergence of the knowledge society. The process of globalization means, among other things, world wide communication of knowledge, information, standards etc. which implies that singular societies with particular cultures are increasingly unable to shield themselves from outside influence. With respect to knowledge standards, benchmarks and rankings emerge that are global in extent and, in principle, provide a common frame of reference. This has profound effects where the knowledge in question is linked to economic productivity and value. In a global order of knowledge in which knowledge is being more and more commodified it is a major issue if local, or culturally specific knowledge provides a sufficient basis to offset disadvantages in the In the following, I will first look at a number of macro-indicators. Of course, macro-indicators do not sufficiently reflect the historical, cultural and contextual differences between countries that have to be addressed when development policies are implemented. Their function is to give a first impression of the dimensions of inequality of knowledge in the world, of magnitudes, differences in scale, and thus the gravity of the problem. The crucial question, what makes the diffusion and transfer of (scientific) knowledge so difficult will be approached with the differentiation between capacities of knowledge use and of knowledge production. Thus, I discuss the model underlying these indicators and their order. While this may not be a terribly new insight a look at different models of development, including the more recent focus on and debate over the role of indigenous knowledge reveal, surprisingly, that the diffusion of scientific and technical knowledge is more the object of ideological controversy than justifiable development strategies. In conclusion I will suggest that in order to achieve a more equitable distribution of knowledge there is no alternative to ‘capacity building from below’. 2) Indicators of Inequality of Knowledge
The macro-indicators of the inequality of knowledge presented below carry one fundamental implication which, as will be discussed, is controversial to some extent. This is that the knowledge in question is Western, universal knowledge, and that the education and Science & Technology (S&T) system in Western IC’s is the yardstick for the assessment of the inequality of knowledge. The global extension of that knowledge system was prepared by the global institutionalization of mass education, first through colonization and the spread of the nation state, and in an enhanced fashion since World War II in the framework of a global model of modernization (Meyer, Ramirez, Soysal 1992). By now knowledge of Western origin is the basis of global scientific and technological development and among the crucial resources for Another implication of the indicators and the way they are compared is that knowledge, insofar as it is considered an important determinant of inequality (particularly material inequality) must be evenly distributed in any society if such inequality is to be avoided. Societies with a high proportion of scientists and engineers are considered to have an economic advantage over societies with a lower proportion of such highly qualified manpower. This ignores the experience of some countries in which a small but highly educated elite may be more successful in absorbing (and possibly creating) knowledge. This ‘colonial’ situation reflects, If the indicators are to be useful to ‘indicate’ knowledge inequalities with a perspective on how they could be rectified they should fit some theoretical model how knowledge is produced, diffused and used in a society, and how different societies come to differ with respect to such an order of knowledge.ii. The capacity to benefit from scientific and technical knowledge has two basic elements: the ability to acquire and to apply knowledge that already exists, and the ability to produce new knowledge. This is obvious from experience with technology transfer. It is not enough to transfer knowledge, e.g. knowledge embedded in a particular technology, from one country/society to another. Instead, in order to achieve a sustained development it is necessary for the knowledge importing country/society to be able to acquire, i.e. absorb the knowledge, to understand it, to interpret and to adapt it to local needs, and subsequently to produce knowledge endogenously along the same line (Cohen, Levinthal 1990). The transfer of new knowledge, e.g. from academia to industry, is already a non-trivial problem in the ICs. How much more difficult must it be in societies that have only a weak tradition of higher education, scientific or technical training, to transfer knowledge from a different country! It will therefore be sensible to distinguish between the scientific-technological potential of a country, which here is to indicate the capacity to take part in scientific and technical communication and to receive and develop imported knowledge (1), and the actual participation in and production of scientific and technical knowledge (2). But before discussing these issues I present the indicators in an order that reflects the above distinction. These are highly simplified indicators falling far behind various approaches attempting to capture the much more complex interrelation between structural, economic and cultural factors. As the data are very incomplete (and their reliability questionable especially but not only in the DCs, figures are only given for selected countries). To highlight differences, i.e. inequalities I give the highest and lowest figures of respective countries within the same region. 1) Scientific-technological potential is measured by a) Adult illiteracy rate, b) years of schooling of the relevant age cohort, c) public expenditure on education as % of GNP, d) public expenditure on R&D as % of GNP, e) scientists and engineers in R&D per million population. 2) Participation in the production of scientific and technical knowledge is measured by a) share of papers in % of world scientific output, b) number of scientific publications (journal articles) per 1000 people, c) number of book titles, d) percentage of internet users. Some obvious indicators of education represent the very basis of the engagement with knowledge. First, the most fundamental condition of taking part in the world of knowledge is literacy. Even the illiteracy of part of the population will seriously impair the opportunities to fully involve every new generation in the communication and production of knowledge. The illiteracy rate indicates the future prospects of a society with respect to becoming part of the Figure 1: Adult Illiteracy Rate in Selected Countries
highest and lowest values in the regions
Source: IWT, Bielefeld University 2002.
As is evident from the figures the African countries are in a particularly critical situation. In countries like Burkina Faso, Niger, Sierra Leone, between eight to nine out of ten women are illiterate. This situation contrasts most sharply with that of the NICs like Korea, where it is virtually no longer an issue. But even India still has a surprisingly high rate especially among women (62%, World Development Report 1998/99). The second indicator is the years of schooling an age cohort receives as this is the precondition for further involvement in knowledge acquisition and production. Figure 2 gives the numbers for some selected countries. The data are incomplete, and even some ICs do not report. The picture is well known and clear: In the ICs members of an age cohort can expect to attend school for 13-15 years and have an enrollment ratio of 100% of the relevant age group. In the poorest DC s like Mali or Burkina Faso less than a third of the relevant age group attended primary school, and the expected years of schooling hover around 2-3. Figure 2: Expected Years of Schooling by Gender
highest and lowest values in the regions
Source: IWT, Bielefeld University 2002.
Data from World Development Report 1998/99.
Accordingly, the number of students (per 100.000 inhabitants) is bound to be a fraction of the number enrolled in primary and secondary schools. The students indicate the next generation of those who are supposed to carry on the torch of knowledge. Note countries where the number is dropping and those where it is rising steadily (Korea). Figure 3: Number of Students per 100.000 Inhabitants
number per 100.000 inhabitants
lowest and highest values in the regions
Source: IWT, Bielefeld University 2002.
A similar impression may be gained from a graph showing the gross enrolment ratio (GER) in Figure 4: Gross Enrolment Ratios by Gender and Region 1980 and 1995
Source: IWT, Bielefeld University 2002.
values in the regions
The ability and willingness of a country to promote education is best reflected in its expenditures in education as percentage of its GDP. Here the somewhat surprising picture is that some DCs are spending as much or more than the ICs (Lesotho, Namibia!, Zimbabwe) while others are trailing far behind (Burundi, Mali, Niger). The effect of this expenditure must obviously be seen before the background of the actual GDP. Figure 5: Public Expenditure on Education in Percent of GDP 1980 and 1995
Source: IWT, Bielefeld University 2002.
highest and lowest values in the regions
Data from World Development Report UNESCO 1998/99.
While expenditures on education provide the support for the educational base, i.e. formal schooling and higher education, governments’ expenditure on R&D indicates the direct support of knowledge production and of its application in the productive sector. Worldwide R&D expenditures amounted to an estimated 470 billion US $ in 1994, the greatest share of which was spent in the US (37.9%), in Western Europe (28%), and in Japan and the NICs (18.6%). The remaining 25.5% were spent by the rest of the world. The ICs have converged on spending on average slightly more than 2% of their GDP on R&D. Most DCs are far from that mark spending as little as 0.2 % (Arab States) to 0.3% (Sub-Sahara Africa). It would be unrealistic to expect them to develop the capacity to participate in the global science and technology game any time soon. Firgure 6: Public Expenditure on Research and Experimental Development in Percent of GDP
lowest and highest values in the regions
Source: IWT, Bielefeld University 2002.
A further indicator in this category is the number of scientists and engineers relative to the population as a whole. This is the central human resources indicator that signals a country’s ability to acquire and implement knowledge from outside as well as to produce new knowledge within its own realm. It is evident that the larger that number the greater the variety of competencies and, thus, the probability that new knowledge can be absorbed and developed further. Again, the picture does not hold any surprises except, perhaps, the differences among the ICs. But the distance to the DCs is so large that one cannot very well imagine how the situation could be reversed. Japan has not only nearly twice as many scientists and engineers per million people than Germany but contrasts with countries like Benin (177), Madagascar (22) and Rwanda (12). The difference between a country that has roughly 3-5000 scientists and engineers per million people and countries that have fewer than 100 sets them worlds apart. In the latter there is not enough critical mass to even sustain an internal intellectual community let Figure 7: Scientists and Engineers in Research and Experimental Development per Million People
lowest and highest values in the regions
Source: IWT, Bielefeld University 2002.
Data from World Development Report 1998/99.
These numbers may be complemented by some additional data, i.e. the distribution of R&D personnel between the productive sector and higher education. It may be assumed that in order to have a smooth and efficient transfer of knowledge from the institutions of higher education and research into industry (and vice versa !) it is necessary to have the appropriate competence at both ends (and preferably mobility of the personnel between them). This is an important part of the “absorptive capacity”. In the IC s the pattern seems to have evolved that roughly 50-60% of the R&D personnel is employed in the productive sector, 25-30% in higher education and Figure 8: Research and Experimental Development Personnel by Sector
R&D
n
i

total 150000
Source: IWT, Bielefeld University 2002.
lowest and highest values of integrated and higher personnel
Next we turn to indicators of the actual participation in the communication and production of knowledge. The most common measure of scientific activity is the production of publications. This is a problematic simplification because the communication and production of knowledge assumes other forms as well, be it the training of students or the transfer of knowledge to people in the production process or the services. When focusing on scientific publications additional problems emerge with the available data sets. The data banks used to compile scientific production focus on the Anglo-Saxon world, primarily the US, and discriminate against publications in the DC s. Another concern is that the scientific paper is a type of knowledge production not necessarily adequate or relevant for DCs (cf. Part 2). These problems will be discussed later. First I will present the picture as it is reflected in the data banks at hand (SCI and Compumath). Again, it is apparent that the relevant scientific activity takes place in the US, Western Europe and Japan, together with the newly industrialized countries (NICs). Since 1990 some relevant changes have taken place. Japan and the NIC s have gained 19% until 1995, the US have lost slightly (-4%), Western Europe has improved its position by 9%, and the dramatic changes in Eastern and Central Europe since the breakup of the Soviet Union are reflected in the CIS’s share dropping 44% and the CEE countries 17%. Without the political changes as an explanation sub-Saharan Africa has dropped by 19% (World Science Report 1998, 22). Figure 9: Scientific Output: Number of Publications per Year in ISI-Journals
values in the regions
Source: IWT, Bielefeld University 2002.
Data from National Science Indicators, Institute for Scientific Information, Philadelphia.
Again, to just give a rough idea about the place that knowledge production has in a particular country one may take as a measure the number of scientific papers per 1000 inhabitants. It does not come as a surprise that very populous nations come out on a lower rank than smaller nations. Relatively small countries, namely Sweden and Switzerland, are at the top of the list. If one were to ask which countries are the most active and efficient knowledge producers they are the One stable pattern is that none of DC s has a ratio higher than 1,0 whereas all the IC s do. Figure 10: Number of Publications in ISI-Journals per 1.000 Inhabitants and Year
lowest and highest values in the regions
Source: IWT, Bielefeld University 2002.
Data from National Science Indicators, Institute for Scientific Information, Philadelphia.
Figure 11: Share of Citations in International Scientific Literatur (ISI) 1996-2000
Source: IWT, Bielefeld University 2002, Data from National Science Indicators, ISI, Philadelphia.
Another indicator of knowledge production compiled by UNESCO is the number of book titles published in a country. The figures very likely reflect the level of intellectual activity and the culture of reading, i.e. dealing with knowledge much more broadly than does the production of In some cases the figures have to be seen with caution. Notably those of the UK and the Netherlands may also reflect the concentration of international publishers in these countries. Figure 12: Number of Book Titles per Year 1990s
lowest and highest values in the regions
Source: IWT, Bielefeld University 2002.
14Next to book titles UNESCO lists a series of other indicators as presumably reflecting the state of cultural development and the intensity of communication, among them the number and volume of daily newspapers, the number of radio receivers, and the production of films. In recent years another medium has assumed much greater importance with respect to information gathering: the Internet. The Internet has not only become a source of information for the acquisition of goods and services but also for research. In addition, it provides a new communication technology with email. Manuel Castells has pointed to the connection between the development of information technology and the growing inequality emanating from unequal access to information and availability of the respective technology (Castells 2000, 375-385). It is generally recognized and accepted that the ability to use the Internet and access information at any time is rapidly becoming a key qualification, and only those economies will be competitive, those societies will have a high standard of living whose production elites know how to use the new information and communication technology. In fact, as Castells shows, the inequalities of IT distribution no longer apply to countries but even within countries where dramatic inequities emerge between urban conglomerates and the rural hinterland. Consequently, the number of Internet hosts by country is an important indicator of the development of that capacity. The only caveat: the numbers are changing rapidly from year to year especially in the IC s. The gap between them and the DC s, foremost those in Africa, is obvious, however. The deficits with respect to access to information and computer power are judged to be as wide as ever. For September 2002 the internet statistics compiler Nua.com reported that Europe had passed the US and Canada in the number of internet users for the first time and accounted for 32% of global internet users, while only 6% were based in Latin America, and just 2% in the Middle East and Africa (http://www.usabilitynews.com/news/article637.asp , 5/28/2003). 3) Determinants and Dynamics of Knowledge Inequalities
The indicators presented above show the familiar fact that there is a great imbalance among with respect to knowledge production. The great share of new scientific knowledge in the world (ca. 80%) is produced by very few countries (USA, Canada, EU, Switzerland and Japan). As long as knowledge is functionally specific to the exigencies of particular regions or countries imbalances in knowledge production may not be a pressing problem. Knowledge about agriculture is not crucial where seafaring is of geographical importance; knowledge about mining is of little help in low lying marsh lands and so on. However, this idealized situation no longer exists, if it ever has. The emergence of a common, though structured global system of knowledge has begun with the emergence of modern science, i.e. with the establishment of 15networks of corresponding scholars across political and language boundaries promoted by the academies in the 17th and 18th centuries. With the appearance of the nation state in the 18th and 19th centuries one can observe a ‘nationalization’ of science, i.e. a limitation of scientific communication, but by the end of the 19th century internationalization of science was again well under way. Since then this process has continued, slowed only by the world wars, and accelerated once more since the 1980s (Schott, 1991). This process of internationalization und now globalization of science communication is very uneven, resulting in a polarization into a center and a periphery that is even more extreme than that in terms of economic wealth (Frame, Narin, Carpenter 1977, 502-504). In a global economy where the production of technologies shifts from one country to another following cheap labor and, to a lesser extent, market demand a country’s privilege of commanding a particular field of knowledge becomes less and less likely. Instead, the strong knowledge producers gain a cumulative advantage: The stronger their knowledge base the more new knowledge are they likely to produce. The crucial mechanism is the link between knowledge and economics and has to do with an important characteristic of knowledge: New scientific knowledge is produced only once. Once it is known (and not forgotten) it is no longer new, and it does not make sense to invest into a ‘second discovery’, as it is easier to copy. From then on it may be shared with others, but whenever it is useful for practical purposes and in demand by others it may become a commodity. This economic mechanism favors the leading knowledge producers and exacerbates the inequality among them as the demand for new knowledge is focused on the small group of ‘front-runners’ who find it increasingly tempting to protect their knowledge against free diffusion and turn it into commercial profit, instead. The drive to protect intellectual property rights is getting stronger, and it already functions as an obstacle to the free diffusion of knowledge. A recent illustration of this was the warning of the Secretary General of NATO who indicated that the technological gap between the US and all other member states had reached such dimensions that they could no longer take part in the same kind of war and risked being relegated to doing the ‘dirty work’. In other words, in the area of advanced military technology, which is admittedly the extreme end of the spectrum, the inequality of knowledge production is caused by secrecy, and it already affects the ICs themselves. Another example may also serve to illustrate this point. Therborn lists information and ideas (thus knowledge) among the determinants of global (in)equality. Knowledge, it appears at first sight, is among those resources that contribute most to the balancing of inequalities, not least because of its apparent fluidity. He makes the case for medical knowledge which has “played an outstanding role.in bringing about the most important process of equalization of the world” (Therborn Ms 2002, 28). Proof of this is given in terms of life expectancy figures across the 16Medical knowledge may, indeed, be an example for a comparatively easy diffusion of knowledge, driven by humanitarian motives. The quandary of the AIDS epidemic in Southern and Eastern Africa, however, raises some doubts even about this case. AIDS has effected a dramatic downturn of life expectancy in the countries concerned, and the protection of intellectual property rights and, thus, financial interests of the pharmaceutical industry is at least one reason among others restricting the free flow of knowledge. The inequality with respect to knowledge use is almost equally as extreme. The spread of mass education is another global diffusion process of knowledge but, as the figures above show, it is also very uneven. If primary and secondary education are regarded as the crucial condition for the acquisition and use of knowledge the uneven distribution of this capacity follows the same pattern of a North/South division. The provision of education is primarily a function of the wealth of a society. Here again, the self-reinforcing dynamics between economic poverty and lack of knowledge capacity prevails. The poor nations cannot provide primary and secondary education of the same breadth and quality as the rich ones, thus, continuously losing ground in the game of knowledge production and absorption. As the world grows into an order of universal scientific and technical knowledge the differentiation between knowledge producers and knowledge users becomes a global distinction. The distinction between knowledge producers and knowledge users, although it is not a fixed and unequivocal one, draws attention to the fact that knowledge production may be increasingly concentrated, relegating some countries that used to be knowledge producers to the role of primarily being knowledge users. The best way to illustrate this growing dependency of some countries relative to others is to look at patent statistics (NSB 2000). Perhaps even more compelling is the movement of scientists and engineers from all over the world to the leading knowledge producing countries. The country attracting most successfully highly trained personnel and thereby profiting from and relying on a sizable ‘brain-gain’ is the United States. The NSF/NSB reports that “an increasing number (nearly 30 percent) of PhD-level scientists and engineers at U.S. universities and colleges are foreign born” and that “participation by foreign-born doctorate-holders in U.S. academic S&E increased continuously during at least the past two decades.” In civil engineering the percentage of foreign-born doctorate holders is highest with 51.5% (NSB 2000, ch.5). The growing concentration of researchers in the highly developed part of the world is reflected to some extent by the increase between 1993 to 1997 at a 5.3% rate annually to roughly 3 million in OECD member states (to 1.11 million in the US alone). Yet, even within the OECD there are those which gain brains and those who lose them. Of the immigrant nationals holding high S&E degrees in the U.S. 8% come from India, 7% from China, but 4% come from Germany. Japan is another country attracting highly skilled workers, attracting 40% the number of her annual university graduates, roughly 241.000 workers in 1999, that is estimated at “nearly double the number of entries to 17the U.S. in …similar categories” (ibid.). The full effect of this mobility of highly trained personnel to the few knowledge producing countries on those affected by ‘brain-drain’ remains Among the potential knowledge users some countries even remain virtually excluded from the use of scientific and technical knowledge because they lack the capacity to absorb and use new knowledge produced elsewhere. The dynamics governing the distribution of knowledge throughout the world are such that the gap between knowledge producers and knowledge users is widening, and even within these categories the differences are more likely to grow. 4) Strategies to overcome inequalities of knowledge
The sequence of indicators presented above was governed by an implicit but obvious model: The development of a ‘culture’ conducive to scientific knowledge starts with basic and secondary education as the base, it grows if the capacity to absorb knowledge is developed on a substantial scale, and it can lead to a sustained indigenous production of new knowledge if this capacity is developed to such an extent that a critical mass of people are provided with sufficient means to pursue exclusively that goal. The major problem is the self-reinforcing nature of this process and its dependence on an economic, political and social environment that allows it to start in the first place. This appears almost self-evident and is in line with development strategies that have been proposed already several decades ago. Nonetheless, debates continue over the question what it is in the nature of scientific knowledge that makes transfer difficult and the adequate strategies to initiate development in the knowledge sector. The development models reflect these debates. Already at the end of the 1960s modernization theorists have responded to this question. They were confronted with the intriguing research findings that the transfer of knowledge as embodied in technology required an economic infrastructure, i.e. labor and capital, as well as a sound primary and secondary education base if it were to have a positive effect on national economic development (Shrum, Shenhav 1995, 62; Meyer, Hannan, Robinson & Thomas, 1979). Thus, although knowledge can be easily copied and diffused (at least those parts that can be formalized and written down), to absorb it and use it effectively is another matter. The conclusion was that development could only be achieved by developing an ‘absorptive capacity’, i.e. creating an indigenous base of knowledge production. The Advisory Committee on the Application of Science and Technology to Development of the UN Economic and Social Council stated in its ‘World Plan’:”It is difficult for a developing country without a science and technology capacity of its own, and particularly without the trained people involved, to know what useful technology exists elsewhere, to understand it, to select it, to adapt, to absorb, to repair and maintain, to operate.” The report, therefore, saw it as essential “to build up 18indigenous scientific capability in the developing countries” (World Plan, 1969, 102). Thus, the priority of development aid shifted to cooperation rather than short-term transfer, to strengthening “endogenous scientific and technological capabilities that are in harmony with the social and cultural traditions and the conditions specific to each DC all the while emphasizing the importance of satisfying basic needs” (Gaillard, 1990, 352). These shifts in policy reflect a better understanding of the systemic character of knowledge management in the broadest sense, and students of science, technology and the innovation process in general attempt to catch this with the notion of National Innovation Systems (NIS).iii‘World systems theory’ (Wallerstein 1974) and institutionalists (Meyer, Ramirez 2003) have denounced such a strategy although for slightly different reasons. The target of their criticism was the assumption that capacity building, as it is called today, would entail the establishment of higher education institutions oriented to basic research and, thus, costly support for specialty driven science that had no relevance in the respective DCs. In the dependency model (which world systems theory is) the ‘Western’ science model was depicted as ideological and non-transferable to DCs. The neo-institutionalists claim that the development model ascribing a central role to Western science is not based on demonstrated effect but on belief. More specifically, they question the implicit hierarchical model which presupposes a linear relationship between science, technology and economic development. It is now generally recognized that the original optimistic (or naive?) view of a linear relationship between investment in basic research, applied research, technological development and economic growth cannot be upheld. Evidently the connection is more complex. The establishment of universities and research laboratories does not guarantee scientific advance or development (Gaillard 1990, 348). Thus, the correlation between scientific and technological capacity and economic well-being reflecting past developments in ICs and NICs may be hiding different causalities. Instead, the critics advance a so-called symmetrical model which argues that both science and technology affect economic development in unique ways. Science transmits values of development and modernization, technology offers “‘solutions’ for the connection between resources and local economic needs.” Thus, Drori, on the basis of an analysis of 54 DCs, comes to the conclusion that the symmetrical model is more applicable to them (Drori, 1993, 211). This finding contrasts sharply with experience in the West where the correlation between science, technology and economic wealth is high. However, probably no one would seriously advocate anymore that an unmitigated transfer of Western style basic research institutions would be a viable development strategy. “Backwash effects” of such a strategy have been identified more than three decades ago. Elite higher education institutions with their basic research orientation are operating in an enclave when set up in DCs. Their relevant references are in the specialty communities abroad. They get their 19research topics as well as the reputation for performed research from them. The result is knowledge production that is irrelevant to the local needs of the country and brain drain of their highly educated, internally to other sectors, or externally to Western knowledge producing countries. It does not help much to denounce the universalist mode of Western science as ideology in order to realize that it presents a Catch-22 for the DCs. Earlier attempts to find a solution implied the reorganization of the science and technology systems in the West so as to block “backwash effects” but that amounted to re-stating the problem (cf. World Plan, 1969, In this paper the focus is on knowledge inequality as such. Thus, the economic side of the issue is not treated. However, the obvious should at least be mentioned, namely that the absorption of knowledge depends not only on the knowledge infrastructure but on the economic potential as well. Without firms that provide a demand for the educated and an opportunity for them to put their knowledge to work there will be little motivation to acquire that knowledge or to stay in the country. In this connection it is important to note that both development aid (ODA) and private foreign investments (FDA) that alone could create such a demand, are declining or non-existent in Sub-Saharan Africa. The lack of an academic labor market in these countries may be the greatest long-term obstacle to a more equitable distribution of knowledge. All these findings remain contradictory, in part based on conceptual decisions embedded in the indicators by which different configurations are measured. The one safe conclusion that may be drawn from various studies is that generalizations are hard to come by and that all cases seem to be different and have to be judged on their own merits. 5) ‘Indigenous knowledge’ as the new paradigm of development
It is no accident that in view of the dimensions of the knowledge gap between the ICs and DCs, the fact that it is widening for many of them, and the apparent failure of policies, the notion of ‘indigenous knowledge’ has captured the attention of DC governments, political activists and NGOs. The debate over ‘indigenous knowledge’ was clearly initiated and is still driven by a guilt complex among Western countries in response to their role as colonial powers. The UN has declared the years 1995-2004 as the International Decade of the World’s Indigenous People to “strengthen international co-operation for the solution of problems faced by indigenous people in such areas as human rights, the environment, development, education and health” (http://www.unesco.org/culture/indigenous/). UNESCO is trying to establish new development paradigms that will support the active participation of indigenous communities in sustainable development strategies. The World Conference on Science (WCS) declaration stated inter alia, “that traditional and local knowledge systems, as dynamic expressions of perceiving and understanding the world, can make, and historically have made, a valuable 20contribution to science and technology, and that there is a need to preserve and protect, research and promote this cultural heritage and empirical knowledge.” (UNESCO WCS 1999). Along a similar line the South African government, through its National Research Foundation, has established as a new research focus the interface of IK and Western science. It considers indigenous knowledge systems as having hitherto been suppressed and having to be brought “into the mainstream of knowledge” (http://www.nrf.ac.za/focusareas/iks/).iv The focus on IK is, in effect, a new approach in development policy and represents a major change in development paradigms as it places knowledge in the center of development strategies, and recognizes, for the first time, the importance of local knowledge and participation in decision-making. By highlighting the significance of local cultural contexts and knowledges and, thus, the conditions of adaptation for the transfer of knowledge from outside, development strategies avoid the appearance of benign colonialism and pay respect to cultural identities. As the whole arena of development policy is ideologically highly charged it is not surprising that the term ‘indigenous knowledge’ (IK) means different things to different parties.v Two strategies may be distinguished. One is pragmatically oriented and seeks to integrate IK into Western knowledge. The other is more radical and claims an autonomous status for IK as an alternative route to development, thereby repeating some of the previous controversies between Proponents of the second view see a major flaw in the pragmatic position’s underlying assumption that Western science, i.e. the “international knowledge system”, remains the frame of reference against which all IK s are judged. The (hierarchical) distinction between IK and Western science “seeks to separate and fix in time and space.systems that can never be separated or so fixed”, and the proposed strategies of storing and exploiting IK will only once again “benefit the richer, more powerful constituencies.thus undermining the major stated objectives.to benefit the poor, the oppressed, and the disadvantaged.” (Agrawal, 1995, 434). Support of this argument is supposedly provided by five decades of development policies that have failed mainly because they have ignored the “social, political and cultural contexts in which they were implemented” (ibid., 425). The conclusion drawn from this argument either implicitly or explicitly is that the support of IK can serve as an alternative to being involved in the Western system of (scientific) knowledge and as a sufficient base of development. However, several caveats have to be mentioned with respect to IK as a development scheme. First, to take IK as an alternative knowledge system to build up a research capacity appears to be highly risky. IK is primarily bound to a rural and agrarian life style. It pertains to local flora and fauna, their sustainable use as food or medicinal purposes. It may make good sense to take this knowledge into account and to resurrect it where it was lost when empowering farmers, not least to protect them against Western knowledge that comes with a price tag or proves to be useless or, worse, harmful. However, several much advertised cases of bio-prospecting and 21bio-piracy that are supposed to prove the wisdom and utility of IK do not give support to IK as an alternative knowledge system. As in the example of the Hoodia cactus, the isolation of the respective compound that is the precondition of its utility requires scientific knowledge, and so do the clinical trials before it can be marketed.vi In other words, the pragmatic strategy to use IK in conjunction with science may smack of exploitation, but it may at least return some profits to the countries where that knowledge exists if that knowledge is properly protected. In no case is it a solution to the problem of knowledge inequality. Second, although it is true that development strategies in the past have underestimated the role of context in the transfer of knowledge and technology it is equally exaggerated to claim that Western science is so context bound that it defies transfer to African or Asian culture altogether. Korea has embraced Western science with great success and its economy has grown tremendously during the last three decades along with it. China with its very different knowledge culture has, with help from the West, transferred know-how and research capacity in biotechnology, among other areas, and aims to rival leaders in the field with its own version of Silicon Valley in and around Shanghai. South Africa has a long established science system in place that before the end of apartheid has primarily served the military and modern industry controlled by the ruling white minority. However, the new government “takes great care not to weaken this apparatus” but rather tries to “realign research, better to serve basic needs and industrial competitiveness; and to give the chance to Black South Africans to get a hold on the Third, there is reason to be cautious of a misplaced romanticization of IK. To take the example of South Africa again, in the debate over HIV/AIDS President Thabo Mbeki gave undue support to the questionable practices of healers by doubting that the virus causes the syndrome, calling for ‘African solutions to an African problem’ while at the same time blocking distribution of recognized medication to those affected. While the ‘African’ version of the problem, according to virologists, is indeed different (HIV-C type) the reference to ‘African’ solutions has given abusive healers the undeserved legitimacy of IK. The case demonstrates that a delineation between sound IK and quackery may be the greatest challenge. 6) Conclusion
As has often been noticed, globalization is a contradictory process. We still cannot be sure that we fully understand its dynamics and its ultimate outcome. On the one hand, the polarization of the global into a relatively small center of knowledge producing countries and a periphery of countries whose capacity to use that knowledge varies widely. This points towards a hegemony of knowledge producers whose power is additionally augmented by the fact that knowledge becomes the most crucial commodity in what is now termed the ‘knowledge society’. With respect to the economic benefits derived from knowledge production in its present form many countries especially in Sub-Saharan Africa are truly excluded. They cannot even use 22knowledge that is on the market and turn it into useful technology and products for their own needs for lack of indigenous capacity to deal with it. On the other hand, there may be a reverse process under way. By virtue of the very process of globalization the ensuing diffusion of mutual awareness first of all directs attention to the growing imbalances of knowledge and their consequences. The above mentioned activities of the UN and UNESCO are testimony to that. Alongside the shift of global attention to indigenous people who are to be included in the global community a host of programs has been established that are designed to create a global perspective on specific issues, coordinate research among member states both in ICs and DCs, thereby gathering information in world wide networks, and at the same time contribute to capacity building in participating countries that are in need of it. Anthropogenic climate change, the maintenance and sustainable management of biodiversity, problems of global environmental change, and the threats of desertification have become crystallizing issues around which large supranational research programs have been established that engage researchers, NGOs and governments around the globe. While it may not be surprising that these programs reproduce to some extent the North/South division of labor, i.e. data collection in the DCs, interpretation of the data in the ICs, they are nevertheless a starting point in involving the DCs in the global process of scientific communication on behalf of their own concerns. Of course, there are also troubling developments that may counteract the beneficial effects of the global science projects. Analyses of the African science systems and the status of researchers seem to indicate that there is a change in the mode of production of scientific knowledge. Worldwide, international demand for research replaces national demand and determines programs and objectives. The system is not regulated by peer assessment anymore but by the market where researchers are out ‘for hire’ (Waast, 5). If this observation proves stable the long term consequences for the weaker countries would be similar to those of the brain drain but perhaps more drastic, as it would prevent the sustained development of indigenous capacities of knowledge use and production. Whatever the longer term consequences of these contradicting developments are, one fact seems to stand out as unchallenged: Inequalities of knowledge can only be erased from the bottom-up, i.e. by setting up functioning systems of primary and secondary education. Wherever education systems are in place they have provided the basis for further development and, ultimately, for the stability of the respective social systems and for securing an acceptable i Cf. H.D. Evers, Transition Towards a Knowledge Society: Malaysia and Indonesia in Comparative Perspective, Comparative Sociology, in print. 23ii I take the ‘order of knowledge’ in any society to be the given ensemble of social arrangements regulating the production and diffusion of knowledge. iii The concept of NIS recognizes that innovation (which may here be taken as equivalent to economic development) is a process that is highly contingent and complex, involving many institutions and their respective configuration. The secondary and higher education system, the organizational structure of the research system, the system of science funding and science policy-making, the taxation system promoting or preventing private investment in knowledge production, and others are in some way responsible for the capacity of a country to participate in the global process of communicating and producing new knowledge and developing new technology either for a domestic or an international market (Nelson 1993). The causal relationship between these factors is not always clear nor are there simple models into which the many different configurations they assume in different countries can be molded. Also, we do not have satisfactory indicators for every factor, and often the appropriate data to substantiate them are lacking. But raw descriptions are better than none, and nothing more than a raw description is attempted here. iv South Africa’s Medical Research Council also seeks to support models that integrate ‘Western’ and indigenous knowledge systems. Iowa State University based Centre for Indigenous Knowledge for Agriculture & Rural Development (CIKARD), one of the key global players in the IK network, operates on the assumption that indigenous knowledges are central to participatory approaches to rural development. Thus, it documents IK for dissemination to development experts and scientists to arrive at beneficial synergies with “the international knowledge systems” (Warren and Mc Kiernan, 1995, 426-433, cited in Ravjee, 2002,56). v Cf. www.nuffic.nl/ik-pages/about-ik.html for a description of IK characteristics. On the relation between local and indigenous knowledge see Antweiler 1998. vi The South African CSIR had patented the appetite-suppressing compound of the Hoodia
cactus (P 57) in mid-1990 after it had been isolated in 1983. The original utility and thus the
origin of the knowledge about it, namely to stave off hunger for the San people on their long
hunting trips, has become obsolete as the remaining San have given up their tradition. It is now
replaced by a different utility in the form of a multimillion dollar demand for slimming aids to
fight obesity among the overfed in Western countries. The issue if CSIR hands down a share of
its royalties to the San who protested CSIR’s deal with a British pharmaceutical company
selling them the rights, is another issue (Ravjee, 2002, 21). The irony of this and similar cases is
that the IK may even have lost its significance in its original context and may only regain it in a
new one.
References
A. Agrawal, Dismantling the Divide Between Indigineous and Scientific Knowledge, Development C. Antweiler, Local Knowledge and Local Knowing, Anthropos, 93, 1998, 469-494. M. Castells, The Rise of Network Society, 2nd ed., Oxford: Blackwell, 2000. W.M. Cohen, D.A. Levinthal, Innovation and Learning. The Two Faces of R&D, The Economic P.A. David, D. Foray, An Introduction to the Economy of the Knowledge Society, International Social Science Journal, 171, 2002. pdf version. G. S. Drori, The Relationship Between Science, Technology and the Economy in Lesser Developed Countries, Social Studies of Science, 23, 1993, 201-215. G.S. Drori, J. Meyer, F.O.Ramirez, E. Schofer, Science in the Modern World Polity. Institutionalization and Globalization. Stanford: Stanford University Press. 2003: H. Epstein, The Mystery of AIDS in South Africa, The New York Review of Books, July 20, 2000. H.D. Evers, Transition Towards a Knowledge Society: Malaysia and Indonesia in Comparative Perspective, Comparative Sociology, in print. D.J. Frame, F. Narin, M.P. Carpenter, The Distribution of World Science, Social Studies of Science, 7, J. Gaillard, Science in the Developing World: Foreign Aid and National Policies at a Crossroads, AMBIO, 19, 8. Dec. 1990, 348-353. J. W. Meyer, F.O. Ramirez, Y.N. Soysal, World Expansion of Mass Education, 1870-1980, Sociology of Education, 65, 1992, 128-149. National Science Board, Science and Engineering Indicators - 2000, Vol.1, National Science N. Ravjee, Beyond the “Indigeneous” versus “Western” Knowledge Dichotomy, Ms., 2002. T. Schott, The World Scientific Community: Globality and Globalization, Minerva, 29, 1991, W. Shrum, Y. Shenhav, Science and Technology in Less Developed Countries, in: S. Jasanoff et al. (eds.), Handbook of Science and Technology Studies, Newbury Park: Sage, 1995, 627-651. G. Therborn, Globalization and Inequality: Issues of Conceptualization and of Explanation, Ms., in UN Economic and Social Council, Science in Underdeveloped Countries, 1969. UNESCO, World Science Report 1998, Paris. UNESCO, Declaration on Science and the Use of Scientific Knowledge, World Conference on Science, http://www.unesco.org/science/wcs/eng/declaration_e.htm. R. Waast, Science in Africa: A Survey, Ms., 2001. I. Wallerstein, The Modern World System. New York: Academic Press, 1974. The World Bank, Knowledge For Development, World Development Report 1998/99, Washington D.

Source: http://sci-cul.ihns.ac.cn/filelib/Knowledge.pdf

cosmeticsurgeon.org.nz

POST OPERATIVE INSTRUCTIONS CARPAL TUNNEL SURGERY Carpal tunnel syndrome is a disorder of the hand which can result in characteristic symptoms of waking at night with pain and tingling (usually the thumb, index and middle fingers), loss of feeling in the hand, clumsiness and difficulty with manual Description of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome The carpal tunnel is a narrow tunnel formed by

Microsoft word - swine flu

Swine Flu -- One of the Most Massive Cover-ups in American History By Dr. Russell Blaylock (www.russellblaylockmd.com) What experience and history teach is this -- that people and governments never have learnedanything from history or acted on principles deduced from it.” G.W.F. Hegel I have been following the evolving “pandemic” of H1N1 influenza beginning with the originaldiscovery of

Copyright © 2010-2014 Pdf Medical Search