Published on November 20, 2008
Open Knowledge Regime for an Innovation Economy Jaijit Bhattacharya Director, Asia South and India Government Strategy
Whats Common to the following ? 2
Here is what is common among them.. ● They are firms based on innovation ● Started by very young people – Some by college kids ● Use Web 2.0 technologies ● Use OPEN SOURCE Is that all ? 3
NONE OF THEM ARE MALAYSIAN FIRMS Or Singaporean or Indian or European or Chinese.. 4
Why is that ? ● Access to capital – Is that really true ? ● Access to technology – They were based on open source technology.. ● Education ? ● The Knowledge regime.. 5
Colonization ● Extraction of economic benefit from an area of influence through manipulation of the rules of engagement through either force or Deceit – Social Colonization – Politico-military Colonization – Digital Colonization 6
Digital Colonization Unfair Rent Intellectual International on IPR/ Property Standards Anti-Trust 7
How can we encourage innovation in the current technological regime ? ● Discussions have noted the monopoly created through the “reproduction” of the innovation via patents ● However, relatively less attention has been focussed in the way innovation takes place and the structures within which innovation is either facilitated or retarded ● Does the networked world of today carry new possibilities for alternate structures of creating knowledge and innovation that are currently being impeded by the patent model of incentivising innovation? ● Is it possible to expand the notion of “commons” for developing these possibilities? 8
The path of free/open software development ● The Free Software Movement has shown that networked and open collaborations of “hackers” can produce software of far better quality that what the best of corporations working in isolation can manage ● The power of open, collaborative structures, working without so- called material incentives is visible in this model ● The Free Software Movement has thus resurrected older models that have played key roles in successful innovation in technology development, such as the cases of the steam engine development in Cornish mines and the blast furnace developments in Great Britain and the US ● If we examine the increased efficiencies of steam engines and plot it against time, we find that after the initial Watts breakthrough, during the period that Watt had monopoly, all further improvements virtually stopped, starting again only after the expiry of his patents 9
Increase in efficiency of steam engine during and after the lapse of the patent Interestingly, all those who made further advances to the steam engine, such as Trevithick, did not file patents. Instead, they worked on a collaborative model in which all advances were published in a journal collectively maintained by the mine engineers, called the “Lean’s Engine Reporter”. This was the period that 10 saw the fastest growth of engine efficiency.
Path to accelerated innovation ● Evidence not only of Cornish mines but also in U.K. and the US of blast furnaces in the 19th Century, show that collective innovation settings lead to a faster diffusion of technology and more innovation as opposed to the closed, patent based monopolies ● Non-patented and open, sharing environment led to the advances in the two key elements of industrial revolution – steam engines and steel ● This is similar to the recent advances of Free and Open Source Software ● An open model of developing knowledge is a faster and surer way to innovation than conferring state monopolies 11
Open Knowledge Regime So how is the World reacting ? 12
First Nobel Laureate in Literature 13 from Asia
iota WHERE KNOWLEDGE IS FREE Government of West Bengal
Why Open Source Open-source software has been called many things: a movement, a fad, a virus, a Communist conspiracy, even the heart and soul of the Internet. But one point is often overlooked: Open-source software is also a highly effective vehicle for the transfer of wealth from the industrialized world to developing countries.” Andrew Leonard, “An Alternative Voice: How the Tech-Poor Can Still Be Software Rich” India_SIP Proposal. Sun Proprietary/Confidential: Internal Use Only 15
Open Source and Open Standards Adoption • South Africa and Belgium have adopted ODF (ISO 23600) as a national standard and their policy for adopting another open document format standard as a national standard is: > The standard should be approved approved by ISO, > it interoperates seamlessly with the the already approved ODF standard (i.e ISO 26300), and that > it works seamlessly on multiple vendor platforms India_SIP Proposal. Sun Proprietary/Confidential: Internal Use Only 16
Contd. • Government of Indonesia and Government of Tamil Nadu have come out with open source National Desktops > Device manufacturers can be asked to natively support these open source desktops • Education > The main educational board of India has come out with a draft curriculum that promotes open source > MIT has put its curriculum on the internet for free distribution > CURRIKI > Creative Commons licenses for books India_SIP Proposal. Sun Proprietary/Confidential: Internal Use Only 17
Other Governments • Government of Kerala have given preference to open source and ODF in their IT Policy document • Government of Brazil has adopted ODF • Views of senior bureaucrats of Sri Lanka • Many other governments are moving in the same path India_SIP Proposal. Sun Proprietary/Confidential: Internal Use Only 18
ODF Olympiad • Led by Government of Malaysia and Government of West Bengal India_SIP Proposal. Sun Proprietary/Confidential: Internal Use Only 19
Other Key Open Knowledge Initiatives ● Agribiotechnology – open source biology’ platform, centered around new microbes useful for making transgenic plants – Australia based CAMBIA/BIOS initiative (Centre for the Application of Modern Biology to International Agriculture/ Biological Innovation for Open Society, the specific arm of CAMBIA dedicated to open-source biology) ● Open Source Drug Discovery – Participatory mechanism for discovering NCE for tropical and neglected diseases
Deaths due to Tuberculosis in 2005 Source: GlobalHealthFacts.org
Drug pipelines for TB and for “more profitable” diseases Number of pharmaceutical and biotech Number of drugs in clinical stage of companies involved in drugs development development projects Comparison of worldwide burden of disease in DALY (Disability Adjusted Life Years) for Tuberculosis, cancer and Source: Casenghi M, DEVELOPMENT OF NEW DRUGS FOR cardiovascular diseases TB CHEMOTHERAPY Analysis of the current drug pipeline
Open Source Drug Discovery by CSIR under Prof. S. K. Brahmachari (A Global Initiative) www.osdd.net
Therefore, if we accept the concept of a knowledge economy, what are the instruments most appropriate for the expansion of the knowledge economy ? 24
Policy Decisions.. ● Move to an Open Knowledge regime to promote innovation ● Adopt Open Source and Open Standards fanatically ● Adopt open source curriculum and move towards participatory science – Promote regional cooperation ● Adoption include change in government's usage of IT – As per study by IIM Ahmedabad, Government of Delhi would save 78% of its software procurement cost by adopting ODF ● Block adoption of proprietary/monopolistic standards and formats from being adopted as global standards 25 ● Spread the awareness
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