The New Imperative of Innovation Policy: Perspectives for Latin America and the Caribbean

Juan Carlos Navarro; José Miguel Benavente


The main purpose of this study is to present the conceptual basis that supports science, technology, and innovation (STI) policy in Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC). It starts by clarifying STI relationship, both conceptual and empirical, to economic growth and it explains how market and coordination failures hinder innovation. Then, it discusses a variety of demand- and supply-side policies aimed at addressing these private sector and institutional insufficiencies. In the specific case of LAC, it examines the region’s underperformance in innovation relative to both emerging and advanced economies, and analyses the degree to which scientific productivity and knowledge inputs have led to accelerated economic development. Finally, the publication presents five dimensions of success for STI policies based on international best practices that should stimulate innovation and economic growth and guide the IDB’s work in STI in the region.

Date Published





Latin America and the Caribbean

Subject Areas

Toward a Business Climate Reform Agenda in the Caribbean


Sylvia Donhert; Tara Lisa Persaud; Stefano Pereira; Wayne Elliott; Kayla Grant;

Date Published