Knowledge has become the main driving force of modern economies and whole societies. Accelerated by powerful information and communication technologies and by globalization, this trend affects countries, organizations and individuals. While it obviously poses risks to many stakeholders, an emphasis on the “knowledge-based economy” offers opportunities to new players in all categories. For advanced industrialized countries with high labor and infrastructure costs, it offers competitive advantages in high-technology industries and efficient service sectors. For transition economies, it offers improved technologies and higher value-added products with closer customer linkages, as well as a path towards sustainable development. For developing countries, it offers opportunities to short-circuit development phases, leapfrog technologies and integrate faster into the global economy.
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