A comparative analysis of science and technology policies of three countries and its relevance to Lesotho

Williams, Maseqobela Bernadette (2005-03)

Thesis (M.Phil (Science and Technology Studies))--University of Stellenbosch, 2005.


The purpose of the study is to investigate and provide an overview of the science and technology systems of three countries, namely South Africa, India and Malaysia. The study seeks to describe the process of science and technology policy development; the relationship of science policy with national policies of these countries and the link between the science and technology policies and national goals. It also identifies the differences, strengths and weakness of the three systems and shows their relevance to Lesotho. The methodology followed in the study was qualitative, conducted through desk research. The source of data was archival, specifically in the case of historical background of the three science systems and documentary, in terms of the current situation of the science systems of each country. The comparative analysis was textual based on the findings of the three case studies of each country. The comparative analysis depicts the common features, strengths and weaknesses, pertaining to each country. The common features were identified in the areas of; National System of Innovation, Politicisation of Science, Indigenous Knowledge Systems and Pubic Understanding of Science. The differences of the three systems were characterised on trends in investment on science and technology, in terms of inputs in research and development, institutionalisation of science, nature of the policies and their implementation process inclusive of the policy instruments, and provision of conducive environment for the prolific growth of science and technology, as a key to socio-economic development of any nation. The comparative analysis also provides lessons to be learned for a Least Developing Country (LCD) like Lesotho. This is in view of the current situation where the country is at its infancy stage to establish a stable, well-coordinated science and technology system. The study recommends pragmatic solutions and strategies that can be copied and be employed, in order to enable science and technology have meaningful contribution towards socio-economic imperatives of Lesotho.

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