Channels and forms of technology transfer

Technology transfer in the global economy involves the interaction of partners on a long-term basis.

The main channels for the transfer of technology as an object of purchase and sale on the world market include interstate (under programs of scientific and technical cooperation or foreign trade agreements), inter-firm (meaning various contracts with foreign partners), as well as intra-firm (between structural units of one company).

Recently, it is the intra-company transfer of technology that is of the greatest importance compared to other channels of international exchange. This is due to the intensive activity in the world economy of large international corporations that place their structural units in many countries of the world. Moreover, the leadership in the world market of any corporation, as a rule, depends, first of all, on how competitive its product is in terms of innovation.

The state policy in the field of international scientific and technical cooperation in Belarus is based on the priority of national interests, taking into account the real geopolitical situation in the world, is focused on supporting competitive developments and promotion to the world market of products created on the basis of domestic new and high technologies.

The Republic of Belarus has a number of partners in scientific and technical activities. The priority direction of international cooperation of Belarus is the development of relations with Russia. Currently, work  continues on two Belarusian-Russian projects “Laser technologies of the XXI century” and “Science-intensive components of general machine-building applications”, which are financed from the budget of the Union of Belarus and Russia.

The Program of Cooperation between the Organizations of the Republic of Belarus and the People’s Republic of China in the Field of Science and Technology, designed for the period up to 2003 and including 33 projects, is being implemented. In 2000, the Chinese-Belarusian Technopolis was opened in Jinan (Shandong Province), which is a modernly equipped base for the industrial development of highly effective scientific achievements.

In today’s environment, companies with huge R&D expenditures seek to maximize the return on the use of developments in practice. That is why “internal transfers”, mutual exchanges are so common. In this regard, the model of technology transfer of American TNCs is of interest: at first it is used by the “parent company”, after 5 -6 years – branches in industrialized countries, after another 9 – 10 years the technologies are implemented to developing countries. After the expiration of patent protection, it can be acquired by licensees and partners of mixed societies.

Collective research organizations, venture firms are being created, contractual scientific work is being carried out, companies are increasingly involved in research projects funded by the state.

Forms of technology transfer can be commercial or non-commercial. The main forms of commercial transfer of technology are the sale of technologies in a materialized and non-materialized form, scientific and production cooperation, etc. It is on a commercial basis, when the buyer pays for the scientific and technical knowledge provided by the seller, that most of the latter are transferred on the world market. Non-commercial forms include the use of available sources of information (special literature, reference books, databases, the Internet); conferences, exhibitions, symposia, seminars, training, internships, practice of students and specialists, carried out on a parity basis by universities, firms, organizations, etc. The main stream of scientific and technical knowledge transmitted on a non-commercial basis covers fundamental R&D, scientific discoveries, business games.

Illegal forms of technology transfer are also widespread in the world. We are talking about industrial espionage and “piracy”, in which the newly industrialized countries of Southeast Asia are especially involved.

Security questions

1.What is technology as a commodity on the world market?

2.What does the innovativeness of the modern economy mean?

3.Describe the subjects and objects of the world market of technologies.