From technology transfer to technology absorption: Addressing climate technology gaps in Africa

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Abstract

Despite many years of technology transfer to Africa under various mechanisms and programmes of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), Africa remains the continent with the lowest level of technology required for climate change mitigation and adaptation. Several studies on how to fix Africa’s climate technology needs, including policy prescriptions by African leaders, tend to focus primarily on the need for more technology transfer to the African continent. In contrast, this article emphasises how African countries can proactively address current technology gaps by strengthening their domestic capacities to absorb, assimilate and deploy imported climate technologies. This article examines the importance of climate technology absorption as a critical component of a holistic climate technology diffusion plan for Africa. It discusses inadequate access to information about imported climate technologies, weak legal protection for imported technologies, lack of domestic capacities to deploy and maintain imported technologies, the weak regulatory environment to stimulate clean technology entrepreneurship, and the absence or inadequacy of climate change laws, as barriers that must be addressed in order to effectively bridge current climate technology gaps in Africa.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)61-84
Number of pages24
JournalJournal of Energy and Natural Resources Law
Volume36
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 14 Oct 2017

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Keywords

  • Absorption capacity
  • Africa
  • Climate technology
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Innovation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Energy (miscellaneous)
  • Law

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