Best management practices for corporate, academic and governmental transfer of sustainable technologies to developing countries

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Title

Clean Technologies and Environmental Policy

Publication Date


Date Added



Innovations with respect to technologies that contribute to environmental sustainability have emerged within national government laboratories, international agencies and within academic research institutes. Since each of these entities is understandably more focused on ab initio research, conceptual development and proofs of concept, the production level manufacturing and broad dissemination of such technologies require development of best management practices (BMPs) for effective partnerships with and/or technology licensure to private sector industry. Alternatively, certain technologies that address specific environmental sustainability needs within the developing countries can be and have been transferred directly, either through bi-lateral transfers or through multi-lateral agencies, serving as intermediaries. The appropriateness of such transfers is contingent upon host country environmental, cultural and socio-political conditions, the type of technology involved, the “terms of transfer” and the relationships established between the technology conceivers and the end-users. The authors select examples of identified modes of sustainable technology transmission and derive experiential BMPs, which may be of some utility for future sustainable technology transfer. Moreover, in providing these BMPs, the historical record and contemporary caveats with respect to unregulated technology transfer, whether sustainable or otherwise, to developing countries and the array of corresponding proposed codes of conduct are examined, given the normative objective that such technologies should ultimately contribute to ecologically benign and societally beneficial objectives, such as environmental sustainability, equitable growth and poverty alleviation. These issues and the need to establish BMPs would be broadly relevant with the new focus on climate change-related technology funds and associated regional impact projects evolving across the globe and within the developing countries in particular.


Technology, Government


Urban Studies and Planning