"There is increasing recognition and evidence to confirm how key the creation, accumulation and transfer of knowledge is for enhancing scientific and technological progress and economic growth. More recently, the continuous move towards globalization along with the progress in information and communication technologies (ICT) highlighted the centrality of knowledge and its intensified impact on the world economy. In recent years, this has led to a new economic system or the so-called 'New Knowledge Economy', which is characterized by the rapid diffusion of ICT, advanced knowledge systems and swift globalization. However, the brisk advancement in knowledge and information and communication technologies simultaneously made it harder for developing countries to bridge the already widening knowledge gap between developed and developing countries.
"From existing research on the knowledge economy we may surmise that knowledge (in the form of technical progress or accumulation of human capital) is seen as a public good, and it tends to be non-rival and partially excludable. These two features of knowledge raise the possibility of knowledge transfer, spillovers, and externality that supports endogenous growth but also highlights the role of institutions in providing incentives for the creation and transfer of knowledge. From prevailing research, we also learn that knowledge transfer can be defined as the process by which knowledge travels from a knowledge holder (a person or organization possessing the knowledge) to a knowledge recipient through one or many transfer channels including human capital mobility (diffusion of tacit knowledge), ICT, training, foreign direct investment, patent, suppliers, licensing, academic links, producer-consumer two way knowledge transfer, etc. (Cowan, Soete and Tchervonnaya, 2001).
"For many years, Arab countries have lagged behind developed and the leading developing countries in terms of knowledge and the capacity to create knowledge. Arab countries would do well to look towards the success stories in the rapidly advancing countries of East Asia — countries that have recognized the importance of knowledge as a crucial determinant of economic growth. "
Samia Satti Osman Mohamed Nour, United Nations University