Methodological and Technological Issues in Technology Transfer

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4.5.2 Capacity-building for assessment, agreement and implementation stages

Many ways of developing capabilities for the assessment, agreement, and implementation stages of technology transfer are suggested by development experience: (1) formal training of employees, (2) technological gatekeeping, by keeping informed of technical literature, and forming links with other enterprises, professional and trade organisations, and research institutions; (3) learning by doing-operational experience such as through twinning arrangements with other organisations. The experience with implementing the Montreal Protocol provides a useful example for capacity building within enterprises (see Chapter 3 and 5); a multilateral fund established by the treaty supports training, research and network building.

More fundamentally, there may also be a need to develop capacity to create a need for ESTs. This can be undertaken by developing a roundtable process, a national dialogue on climate change issues of organised stakeholders representing priority sectors and various private as well as public interests to consider mitigation and adaptation options (Van Berkel et al., 1997).

Capacity for negotiation by recipient countries at the agreement stage can overcome some of the biases inherent in development assistance. Donors are often biased in favour of companies and technologies based in their own countries. International capital provided under preferential terms and conditions is often most important for financing technology transfer (Van Berkel and Arkestein, 1998). Multilateral assistance agencies prefer technologies that have a proven commercial track record. Their procurement policies, which encourage competitive bidding, often preclude support for the acquisition of the most advanced technologies that might be environmentally sounder, but carry additional technical risks. A survey of technology and technology needs carried out on behalf on SBSTA among non-Annex II Parties found that specific national and mitigation needs still have to be assessed in detail (Van Berkel and Arkestein, 1998).

There is also a need for increased publicity and awareness among consumers on the subject of energy efficiency. This becomes very relevant when considering domestic and commercial consumers, for whom there has been a felt need for large-scale awareness programmes as well as for demonstration projects. Consumer education could also be considered a form of capacity building that makes consumers more able to make intelligent purchases and investments that save them money. One example is the World Bank's Lithuania Energy Efficiency/Housing Pilot Project, in which the World Bank provides credit to condominium associations to improve the energy efficiency of their residential buildings (World Bank, 1996). The project provides extensive capacity building to allow homeowners to understand the technologies, costs and benefits, how to finance with credit, and the contracting mechanisms for implementing investments with private-sector firms.

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