Asia-Pacific National Innovation Systems
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Asia-Pacific Forum - Promotion of NIS


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Summary Of Organization Presentations

United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP)

A Sub-national Innovation System (SIS) means building a mutually cooperative system among innovative actors agglomerated in a certain space or area, based on mutual trust and reciprocity among innovative actors in a region. It means a regional innovation system on the level of sub-national units. A Sub-national Innovation System emerged because of the rise of global competitiveness. Trade liberalization led to the weakening of national economic sovereignty in the 1990s, and because of the rising prominence of globally competitive regional or local industrial clusters across the world. At the policy level, the concept of SIS is relatively new - it is not a simple sub-system of the National Innovation System. Recently, governments are promoting sub-national innovation and cluster-building policies as ways of boosting national competitiveness. Regions are challenged by intense global competition. There is an urgent need to develop a strong SIS, as a basis for sustainable economic growth. UNESCAP's new initiative on SIS will contribute to enhancing technology competitiveness and innovation capacity building of local SMEs in the Asia-Pacific region.

United Nations Conference on Trade and Development India (UNCTAD India)

Intellectual Property Rights have both advantages and disadvantages, but for the South, the disadvantages outweigh the advantages. The benefits of innovation through IPRs flow more easily to firms with higher capitalization and strong R&D base, than to firms with lower capitalization. Dissemination of technologies is also adversely affected by IPRs, which, in turn has an adverse effect on innovation in the South. Therefore, the IPR regime should achieve an effective balance between the interests of the technology developers, and those of the users. There is also an inconsistency between privately held IPRs and public ownership of resources such as biodiversity, farmers' rights and farmers' privileges to re-sow and share seeds, and the ethics of patenting of life forms. The present IPR regime does not allow for collective ownership of knowledge, nor does it allow for incremental improvements in knowledge. Thus, traditional knowledge used extensively in the South for conservation, medicine, agricultural practices and for other purposes does not get the recognition and monetary rewards that it should get.

Asian and Pacific Centre for Transfer of Technology (APCTT)

The purpose of the National Innovation System is to understand the factors which stimulate innovation, and to use them as a framework in formulating a national and/or company innovation strategy. Though the elements of an innovation system are different from one country to another, the basic factors remain the same. Governments have a very important role to play in the innovation system. While framing the policy of the National Innovation System, consultations should be held with all who are concerned with it and who will be affected by it, i.e. all major stakeholders should be involved in the process. The purpose of National Innovation System (NIS) project being implemented by APCTT is to enhance NIS in member countries, and to promote good NIS policies and practices. To achieve this purpose, seminars, workshops and forums have been organized to share good NIS policy frameworks and practices. An NIS on-line network on the APCTT website has also been established.