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close this bookTechnological Independence The Asian experience (UNU, 1994, 372 pages)
close this folder5 The Philippines
View the document(introductory text...)
View the documentThe historical roots of technological dependence
View the documentS&T policy: rhetoric and reality
View the documentCase-studies
View the documentCase-study results
View the documentTechnological dependence: nature and consequences
View the documentS&T in the Philippines: inputs and outputs
View the documentThe vicious circle paradigm
View the documentThe anatomy of technology transfer
View the documentThe search for models: learning from Asia
View the documentVision and commitment
View the documentToward a leap-frogging strategy
View the documentNotes
View the documentBibliography
View the documentAppendix 1
View the documentAppendix 2. major achievements of S&T in the Philippines

(introductory text...)

Alvin Toffler's paradigm of the three waves of civilizations, following and sometimes overlapping one another, represents the major stages of S&T development.1 His civilizations also reflect an ascending level of scientific and technological sophistication. They are characterized by the following technologies:

1. First-wave technologies, comprising the pre-industrial technologies which are labour-intensive, small-scale, decentralized, and based on empirical rather than scientific knowledge. The intermediate, appropriate, or alternative technologies based on the Schumacherian philosophy of "small is beautiful" also fall into this category.

2. Second-wave technologies, comprising the industrial technologies that were developed between the time of the Industrial Revolution and the end of the Second World War. These are essentially based on the principles of classical physics, classical chemistry, and classical biology.

3. Third-wave technologies, comprising the post-industrial or high technologies which are called science-intensive because they are based on our modern scientific knowledge of the structures, properties, and interactions of molecules, atoms, and nuclei. Among the important high technologies are micro-electronics, robotics, computers, laser technology, optoelectronics and fibre optics, genetic engineering, photovoltaics, polymers, and other synthetic materials. Some of the representative types of technologies in the first-wave, second-wave and third-wave classes are tabulated in the S&T taxonomical matrix given in table 1.

Table 1. S&T taxonomical matrix

Type of technology

First-wave technologies

Second-wave technologies

Third-wave technologies

Materials technologies

Copper, bronze, iron, glass, ceramic, paper

Steel, aluminium, dyes, plastics, petrochemicals

Polymers, semiconductors, liquid crystals, superconductors

Equipment technologies

Plough, lathe, mills and pumps, spinning wheel

Engines, motors, turbines, machine tools

Laser tools, micro processors' robots

Energy technologies

Wood and charcoal, wind power, water power

Coal, oil, hydroelectric power, geothermal power

Solar cells, synthetic fuels, nuclear fusion

Information technologies

Printing, books and letters, messengers

Typewriter, telephone, radio, telegraph, TV

Computers, fibre optics, artificial intelligence

Life technologies

Traditional agriculture, animal breeding, herbal

Mechanized agriculture, surgery, antibiotics, food

Hydroponics, artificial organs, genetic engineering

It is possible to define five discernible stages in the development of a national technological capability. These are, in ascending order: (1) operative capability; (2) adaptive capability; (3) replicative capability; (4) innovative capability, which is the ability to make significant modifications and improvements on the basic design of existing technology; and (5) creative capability, the ability to design and produce an entirely new and revolutionary technology.

The attainment of stage 5 (creative capability) represents technological mastery in a given country.

The notion of technology is complex, with numerous links to other complex notions: the conceptual framework that we use in this study, including the case-studies, is the techno-system shown in figure 1. This shows the ends and means of organized production as well as the growth and evolution of the useful stock of technical knowledge.

The stock of relevant knowledge in the information subsystem interacts with the other components through the flow of information and feedback processes. It consists not only of scientific and technical knowledge, but also managerial, banking, legal, and other skills.

One mechanism that stimulates the growth of the stock is research and development (R&D), a component of the techno-system linked with the others through information flows and feedbacks. The R&D component is the source of changes.


Fig. 1. A techno-system for product X

The definition of inputs and outputs for the techno-system also defines essentially its system boundaries and structure. In the copper industry, for example, we could consider either copper metal or copper wire to be the principal output of the techno-system. The principal input could be either just energy or energy and copper concentrates. These choices imply various configurations of the system components. To reduce arbitrariness, the principal output is limited to consumer products or intermediate products. The inputs could either be endogenous (internal to the system) or exogenous (outside the system). Of the various system components, material inputs, capital, and unskilled labour are defined as exogenous, while skilled labour and managerial inputs, which are essentially information, are considered endogenous.

One could state, by way of summary, that the techno-system is conceived to be an organized structure for the creation of products to satisfy a set of human needs. Its central feature is the knowledge stock which acts as the source of skills and expertise in the operation of the various components. It provides the mechanism for systems' memory and learning. Technology refers to the knowledge and skills, either in software or embodied in hardware, associated with productive components of a techno-system.

The system "crossfeeds" are exogenous factors which greatly affect (i.e. influence the system characteristics of) the techno-system. These may be classified into four broad categories.

Political/legal factors:

- Political stability/government and political structures. - State perception of S&T.
- State priorities in S&T.
- State incentives, disincentives.
- Endogenization of S&T.
- State policies on technology transfer.
- Policies of major trading partners.
- Activism of engineers and scientists.
- Interests of political leaders.
- Capacity for policy implementation.
- Consensus on development goals.
- Acceptance of meritocracy.
- Existence of policy instruments favouring self-reliance.
- Existence of vested interest for technological dependence. -Corruption.

Sociocultural factors:

- History of S&T.
- S&T tradition.
- Commitment to self-reliance in S&T.
- Social environment for successful technology transfer. -National pride.
- Social equity in technology development. -Existence of a "techno-class."
- Educational levels in S&T.
- National S&T potentials.
- Existing technological capacity.
- Social cohesiveness and stability.
- Self-reliant attitudes of scientists/engineers.
-Class character of technology.
- Attitudes favouring technological dependence.

Economic factors:

- Economic development philosophy.
- Existing structure of the national economy.
- Economic roles of the private and state sectors.
- Local market size.
- Economic dualism.
- Strong local demand for foreign products.

Technology transfer factors:

- Transfer mechanisms.
- Capabilities for technology choices.
- Learning effects of technology transfer.
-Costs of technology transfer.
- Terms of technology transfer.
- Characteristics of technology.

We use a two-level definition of S&T self-reliance. At the macro level, self-reliance is defined as at least the existence of replicative capacity in all types of second-wave technologies. These are the entries in the third column of table 1. This definition may be complemented by choosing some values of the indicators in table 2.

At the micro level, self-reliance is associated with a specific integrated production system. It must be expressible in terms of systemic characteristics such as goal-setting, inputs and outputs, dynamics, control, learning and memory, etc. This is in contrast to the macro definition of S&T self-reliance, which is a definitive state of a country's S&T capacity. For example, it is only meaningful to talk about self-reliance in copper wires, or personal computers, or refrigerators. The concept, therefore, is micro.

Table 2. Comparative education indicators


Number enrolled in primary school as percentage of age-group

Number enrolled in secondary school as percentage of age-group

Number enrolled in higher education as percentage of population aged 20-24


Total

Male

Female






1965

1983

1965

1983

1965

1983

1965

1983

1965

1983

India

74

85

89

100

57

68

27

34

5

9

China

89

104

-

116

-

93

24

35

_

1

Philippines

113

114

115

115

111

113

41

63

19

26

Thailand

78

99

82

101

74

97

14

29

2

22

Republic of Korea

101

103

103

104

99

102

35

89

6

24

Japan

100

100

100

100

100

100

82

94

13

30

Source: World Bank, World Development Report, 1986.