Intermediation for Technology Diffusion and User Innovation in a Developing Rural Economy: A Social Learning Perspective
Artikel i vetenskaplig tidskrift, 2014
Technology intermediaries are seen as potent vehicles for addressing perennial problems in transferring technology from university to industry in developed and developing countries. This paper examines what constitutes effective user-end intermediation in a low-technology, developing economy context, which is an under-researched topic. The social learning in technological innovation framework is extended using situated learning theory in a longitudinal instrumental case study of an exemplar technology intermediation programme. The paper documents the role that academic-related research and advisory centres can play as intermediaries in brokering, facilitating and configuring technology, against the backdrop of a group of small-scale pisciculture businesses in a rural area of Colombia. In doing so, it demonstrates how technology intermediation activities can be optimized in the domestication and innofusion of technology amongst end-users. The design components featured in this instrumental case of intermediation can inform policy making and practice relating to technology transfer from university to rural industry. Future research on this subject should consider the intermediation components put forward, as well as the impact of such interventions, in different countries and industrial sectors. Such research would allow for theoretical replication and help improve technology domestication and innofusion in different contexts, especially in less-developed countries.