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Prospects for transition to a knowledge-based economy in the Arab region

Samia Satti Osman Mohamed Nour (Department of Economics, King Abdulaziz University, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia)

World Journal of Science, Technology and Sustainable Development

ISSN: 2042-5945

Article publication date: 30 September 2014

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine the challenges and opportunities for the transition to a knowledge-based economy in the Arab region.

Design/methodology/approach

Both descriptive and comparative approaches are used, together with the framework and definition of “knowledge-based economy” often used in the international literature to examine the challenges and opportunities for a transition to a knowledge-based economy in the Arab region.

Findings

The findings support the hypothesis concerning the challenges and opportunities for transition to a knowledge-based economy in the Arab region. This transition is seriously impeded by several political, social, economic, institutional and organisational obstacles and impediments. Overcoming the major challenges hindering the transition to knowledge-based economies will involve changing the economic structure by shifting from (rent-seeking) natural resources-based (oil) economies to knowledge-based economies in the Arab region.

Originality/value

This paper is valuable because it fills the gap in the Arab literature by presenting a more comprehensive analysis and investigating the challenges and opportunities for the transition, which previous literature has failed to adequately discuss. Moreover, the paper supports the efforts aimed at enhancing knowledge-based economies in the Arab region. The findings imply that it is essential for the Arab region to overcome challenges by implementing sound strategies for their transition to knowledge economies and improving and enhancing appropriate investments in human capital, effective institutions, relevant technologies and innovative and competitive enterprises to facilitate such a transition.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

JEL Classifications— O10, O11, O30

The research work presented in this paper is originally prepared for the World Association for Sustainable Development (WASD) 12th International Annual Conference 2014: “West Meet East: Sharing the Past and Current Experience to Benefit the Future” University of Quebec in Montreal (UQAM), 13-15 August 2014, Montréal – Canada. The author would like to thank the participants for their useful comments on this paper. All the usual disclaimers apply.

Citation

Satti Osman Mohamed Nour, S. (2014), "Prospects for transition to a knowledge-based economy in the Arab region", World Journal of Science, Technology and Sustainable Development, Vol. 11 No. 4, pp. 256-270. https://doi.org/10.1108/WJSTSD-07-2014-0017

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2014, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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