Research and Development

In today’s increasingly knowledge-driven world, science and technology (S&T) are the inseparable twin keys to progress and industrial growth as against the resource endowment of the past. Apparently, without scientific knowledge and its application the economy of a nation or an organisation either remains stagnant or declines. Consequently, most countries of the world now devote an increasing proportion of their resources to S&T and associated research and development (R&D), in an attempt to build competitive advantage or to catch up with others who have already done so. R&D, most especially in S&T, has become one of the most enduring and effective means of improving sustainable economic development and re-enforcing competitiveness in industries in a rapidly changing world. Productive R&D is expected to lead to new products or improvement of existing products, new process development or improvement of existing processes and generation/creation of new knowledge, patents, copyrights and publications. Publications are an indicator of quality invention and research outputs while patents, copyrights, and funding from companies are an indicator that those inventions have market potential (Carneiro, 2000; Werner and Souder, 1997; in Numprasertchai and Igel, 2005). However, global experiences have shown that the conduct of scientific R&D does not robotically translate into development. For R&D to have any economic impact; R&D activities must be creative, innovative and exist within a strong national innovation system (NIS).

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