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Fri, 22 Sept



UNGA-78 | Innovation Systems and Global Value Chains

The link between Innovation Systems and value chain participation is complex, especially for developing Global South countries aiming for growth. The session will discuss whether innovation enables value chain entry or vice versa, and its impact on employment and sustainability, including greening

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UNGA-78 | Innovation Systems and Global Value Chains
UNGA-78 | Innovation Systems and Global Value Chains

Time & Location

22 Sept 2023, 10:00 am – 12:00 pm UTC



About the Event

Science Summit around the 78th United Nations General Assembly (UNGA78)

ISC and its partners will organise the 9th edition of the Science Summit around the 78th United Nations General Assembly (UNGA78) on 12-29 September 2023.

The role and contribution of science to attaining the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) will be the central theme of the Summit. The objective is to develop and launch science collaborations to demonstrate global science mechanisms and activities to support the attainment of the UN SDGs, Agenda 2030 and Local2030. The meeting will also prepare input for the United Nations Summit of the Future, which will take place during UNGA79 beginning on 12 September 2024.

CRIS-IS.ORG is joining hands with ISC, Guru Nanak Dev University -India, The Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) Australia, and Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics and Sciences (ABARES) to hold four panels:

1. Advancing Technologies, Employment Possibilities and Future Skills: Prospects for Latecomer Countries: Wednesday, September 13 | 8:00am - 9:30am EDT

2. Transforming Innovation Systems and Restructuring Value Chains in Asia: The Way Forward: Saturday, September 16 | 10:00am - 11:30am EDT

3. Innovation Systems and Global Value Chains: Balancing the two for Growth, Human Welfare and Environmental Sustainability: Friday, September 22 | 6:00am - 7:30am EDT

4. Innovation Policy for sustainability - Reflections from Australian agriculture: Saturday, September 23 | 5:00am - 7:00am EDT

View the UNGA78 webpage:

View the UNGA-78 web page:

Innovation Systems and Global Value Chains: Balancing the two for Growth, Human Welfare & Environmental Sustainability

DATE: 22 September 2023 (Friday)

6 AM EDT & NY | 10 AM GMT | 11 AM UK | 12 PM South Africa | 3.30 PM India | 6 PM China | 8 PM Canberra

Speakers: Prof. Raphie Kaplinsky, Prof. Carlo Pietrobellie, Prof. Roberta Rabellottie, Prof. Keun Lee, Prof. Rajah Rasiah 

(Our session is of 90 minutes, therefore each speaker will speak for about 15 minutes)

Chair: Prof. Raphie Kaplinsky

Moderator: Swati Mehta

Convenors of the session: Prof. Mammo Muchie, Dr Swati Mehta, Dr Rajesh GK and Mr Declan 

The relationship between Innovation System and participation in local, regional and global value chains is complex. Whether innovation capability acts as ‘enabler’ to enter and participate in value chains or entering the value chains provides ‘window of opportunity’ to accumulate the innovation capabilities? This issue that is of greater concern for laggard countries in Global South that aspires to grow and sustain in the contemporary globalized world. Subsequent it is also important to examine the impact of both stronger innovation systems and participation in value chains on gainful employment opportunities and the environmental sustainability. These are some aspects that will be discussed in the session along with understanding the challenges of greening the value chains for both incumbents and latecomer countries.


Raphael Kaplinsky

Honorary Professor, Science Policy Research Unit, University of Sussex

Raphael Kaplinsky is an Honorary Professor at the Science Policy Research Unit at the University of Sussex, a Professorial Emeritus Fellow at the Institute of Development Studies at the University of Sussex and an Emeritus Professor at the Open University and Research Associate in Policy Research in International Services and Manufacturing (PRISM), University of Cape Town. My professional career has been devoted to an understanding of the character of social, economic and environmental growth and the promotion of more equitable and sustainable paths of development. My research and publications have focused on sustainable and inclusive development, techno-economic paradigms, globalisation and global value chains, productivity and innovation, appropriate technology, the impact of China (particularly on Africa), commodities and the terms of trade, industrial policy, and post-Apartheid transformation in South Africa. This research agenda has been supported by a series of micro and meso level studies in many countries, involving close collaboration with research colleagues, governments, international organisations and civil society organisations. My current research is on the crisis in capitalism seen through the lens of a socio-techno-economic paradigms, and the prospects for a more economically, socially and environmentally sustainable future. Four themes cross-cut these individual research areas and follow from my experience as a political activist in my country of origin, South Africa during the Apartheid-era. The first is an ongoing concern with equity and sustainable development. The second is the critical importance of political economy and interdisciplinary enquiry to an holistic understanding of what has made the world we live in, and how we might change it for the better. The third is the centrality of technology to human progress – however, technology is socially shaped and innovation must be provided with directionality. Fourth, both because each of us has a responsibility to contribute to a more equitable and sustainable world and because we cannot understand the world from the vantage point of an ivory tower, research cannot be separated from action. I have sole-authored nine books, co-authored 17 books, edited numerous journal Special Issues, published more than 80 peer-reviewed journal articles and more than 60 book-chapters.

Carlo Pierobelli

UNESCO Chair in STI Policies for Sustainable Development, UNU-MERIT

Carlo Pietrobelli, UNU-MERIT is UNESCO Chair in STI Policies for Sustainable Development, UNU-MERIT, Maastricht, and Professor of Economics, University

 Carlo Pietrobelli is a professor and policy advisor on innovation and industrial development and policy. He currently holds a UNESCO Chair on “Science, Technology and Innovation Policies for Sustainable Development in Latin America” at the United Nations University UNU-MERIT, Maastricht. He is a Professor of Economics at University Roma Tre, Italy, and Adjunct Professor at Georgetown University, Washington D.C.. During 2009-2016 he was a Lead Economist at the Inter-American Development Bank.

His research interests range from development economics to innovation, trade, industry and natural resources in developing countries. He has published widely in international journals and his books were

published by Harvard University Press, Edward Elgar, Palgrave and Routledge. He holds a PhD in Economics from Oxford University and has been a regular policy advisor to governments in Africa, Asia, Europe and Latin America.


Personal website:


Google Scholar:

Roberta Rabellotti

Department of Political and Social Sciences, Università di Pavia – Italy

Roberta Rabellotti is a Professor of Economics in the Department of Political and Social Science in the Università di Pavia. She has a Laurea in Economics at Università Bocconi, a Master of Science in Development Economics at the University of Oxford (St. Antony’s College) and a Doctor of Philosophy at the Institute of Development Studies, University of Sussex. Her research focuses on development economics, regional economics, innovation in developing countries, clusters and small enterprises, multinationals and Global Value Chains. She has working experience with Orkestra, Inter-American Development Bank, EC, UNIDO, ILO, ECLAC-UN, UNCTAD. More information are available at

Keun Lee

Distinguished Professor of Economics, Seoul National University

Distinguished Professor

Keun Lee is Distinguished Professor of Seoul National University (economics), and Head of the Center for Comparative Economic Studies. He is a Fellow of the CIFAR (Canada), and founding director of the Center for Economic Catch-up (now chairmen of the board). He is the winner of the 2014 Schumpeter Prize for his monograph on Schumpeterian Analysis of Economic Catch-up (2013 Cambridge Univ. Press). He is also an editor of Research Policy.

In 2021, He served as the Vice-chairman of the National Economic Advisory Council, which is a key advisory body for the President of Korea (Chairman of the Council). He is also a regular writer for Project Syndicate. He served as the President of the International Schumpeter Society (2016-18), a member of the Committee for Development Policy of UN (2013-18), a GFC member of the World Economic Forum (2016-19). He obtained Ph.D. in economics from the University of California, Berkeley. His total citations received is about 12,000 with H-index of 49 (Google Scholar). He has a new book, China’s Technological Leapfrogging and Economic Catch-up, from Oxford Univ. Press (2021).

Rajah Rasiah

Distinguished Prof of Economics, University of Malaya, Malaysia

Professor Dr Rajah Rasiah obtained his doctorate in economics from Cambridge University in 1992, and served as a fellow at Harvard University in 2014. He was Dean of the Faculty of Economics and Business at UNIMAS in 1999-2000, and at the Faculty of Economics and Administration at University of Malaya in 2009–2010 and 2013–2014. He is the Executive Director of the Asia-Europe Institute at Universiti Malaya and also holds professorial fellow positions at the Centre for Resilience and Sustainable Development, Cambridge University, UNU-MERIT, Maastricht University, and the Technology Management and Development Centre, Oxford University. Among his international awards include the Robert McNamara Award from the World Bank in 1993, The Friedrich-Ebert Stiftung Senior Award in 1995, the Celso Furtado Prize for advancing the frontiers of Social Science thought (Economics) from the World Academy of Sciences in 2014, and the Merdeka Prize under the category of scholastic achievement in 2018 from the Merdeka Prize Committee. He was awarded the Distinguished Professor of Economics Position by the Ministry of Higher Education of Malaysia in 2017. He was appointed to the Malaysian Finance Minister’s Economic Advisory Board in 2023.

Swati Mehta

Guru Nanak Dev University, India


Swati Mehta (PhD) teaches at Punjab School of Economics, Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar. She is Associate Editor, African Journal of Science, Technology, Innovation and Development, Rutledge, Taylor and Francis Group.

She was Visiting Researcher, Institute of Economic Research, Seoul National University, Seoul, S. Korea with the award of International Scholar Exchange Fellowship (ISEF) of Korea/Chey Foundation for Advanced Study during March-August’ 2019.

Her area of research includes Economics of Innovation, Innovation Systems Approach, Global Value Chains, Development Economics, and Manufacturing Industries in developing countries. She is a Member of ‘The Global Network of Economics of Learning, Innovation and Competence Building Systems (Globelics). She is a founding member of earlier career Innovation Researchers, CRIS,

She has published articles in journals like Asian Journal of Technology Innovation, Seoul Journal of Economics, International Journal of Technology Management and Sustainable Development. Her latest published book is: Innovation Systems, Economic Development and Public Policy: Sustainable Options from Emerging Economies by Roultedge India and her upcoming book is Challenges to Punjab Economy: A Regional Perspective from India,

December 8, 2023 by Routledge India.

She is a referee to the journals of repute including Economic Modeling, Millennial Asia, Innovation and Development, Asian Journal of Technology Innovation, African Journal of Science, Technology, Innovation and Development.


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