Table of Contents:

Final remarks

In this chapter, we started to delve into the implications of intellectual monopoly capitalism on the peripheries. We pointed out that two new forms ofextractivism emerge: knowledge and data extractivism as specific cases ofintangibles extractivism. On this basis, and considering the results of previous sections, we analysed the limitations of innovation, GVC and catching-up studies to fullyacknowledge the global and local context faced by the peripheries.}}

We argued that policy recommendations focus on treating symptoms. The NIS focuses on incomplete NIS and the entrepreneurial state approach argues that the problem is that states do not garner rewards from their investment in R&D. This book is an attempt to move beyond these symptoms. Understanding the specificities of the peripheries vis-a-vis core countries as well as introducing conflict and political tensions in the organization of innovation systems are indispensable for understanding the interplay between a peripheral state and global intellectual monopolies.

At the firm level, upgrading in a GVC and catching-up or leapfrogging were also evaluated. We argued that intellectual monopoly capitalism has further limited knowledge circulation deepening the subordination of peripheral countries’ firms participating in the GVC.

Policies are elements of the social process, which thus depend on a country’s context and production relations, something Schumpeter (1942, p. 108) identified as a point of agreement with Marx. In this vein, policy recommendations should evolve with the context, acknowledging the limitations of existing states as well as the fact that states are contested territories. More often than not, they will be representing the interests of dominant classes, favouring the spread of intellectual monopoly capitalism. Grassroots movements and other forms of social organizations are of utmost importance, not only in the peripheries, to push for counterbalancing trends (see Chapter 14).

In the following chapters, we delve into intangibles extractivism in order to conceptualize further the peripheries’ context and production relations.


  • 1 In Chapter 1 we explained that we refer to core and peripheral countries because we include China in the core, which is not a developed country. Moreover, the persistence of divergence brought into question the idea of “developing countries” which implicitly refers to a progression towards development. In addition, given the heterogeneities within the core and the periphery, we use these concepts in plural.
  • 2 For instance, Africa’s pharmaceutical imports represent between 70% and 90% of its consumption (Campbell, 2020).
  • 3 An innovation system could be emerging towards a mature system but could also be evolving towards a more dependent and incomplete system, or even remain static for extremely long periods. Even mature NIS could become weaker. For instance, when global intellectual monopolies offshore links of their innovation networks, they may leave behind or weaken links with institutions from their home country.
  • 4 “The incumbent who commands the highest productivity from existing technologies finds no reason to adopt new technologies” (Lee & Malerba, 2017, p. 346).


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