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The political economy of technical intellectual capital formation in southeast Asia

, Emory University, United States

Emory University . Awarded


In an increasingly global and technical world economy, the knowledge and skills embodied in research capable scientists, engineers, and technicians is becoming ever more important for sustainable economic development. But given the importance of this “technical intellectual capital,” why have some countries been so successful in developing this capital while others have not?

In this dissertation I draw upon the resource curse, developmental state, skill development, and ‘critical junctures’ literatures to form a new theory to explain skill formation, especially for developing countries. In particular, I examine how structural conditions influence preferences for coalitional structure. Coalitional structure, in turn, leads to the formation of institutional systems, which finally foster or constrain the development of innovatory processes.

My results indicate that resource endowments and ethnic composition interact to influence preferences for coalitional breadth. Broad coalitions, on the one hand, form the basis for institutional systems supporting developmental coalitional alliances between the state and a broad cross-section of private economic actors, including labor and academia. On the other, narrow coalitions form the basis for a distributional coalitional alliance based on personalistic ties and rent-seeking objectives. In the end, institutional systems created to maintain coalitional preferences bear directly on the nation's capacity to develop technical intellectual capital.


Ritchie, B.K. The political economy of technical intellectual capital formation in southeast Asia. Ph.D. thesis, Emory University. Retrieved March 6, 2021 from .

This record was imported from ProQuest on October 23, 2013. [Original Record]

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