Spheres of Innovative Breakthrough in Israel

DOI: 10.20542/0131-2227-2016-60-3-92-100

D. Mar'yasis, Institute of Oriental Studies, Russian Academy of Sciences (IV RAS), 12, Rozhdestvenka Str., Moscow, 107031, Russian Federation (dmaryasis@yandex.ru

Abstract. Since Israel gained its independence in 1948, it underwent major developments from a relatively undeveloped society to one of the main global high-tech hubs. In the 1990s, when the major technological breakthrough in Israel occurred, the state did not pick up any particular industry as a main goal for assistance. State assistance was given to all high-tech projects that met the criteria of scientific and commercial sustainability. In the 21st century the situation did not change seriously, but it became obvious that an equal development support for all high-tech industries is a backbreaking task. That is why, while not neglecting all other high-tech industries, the state picked up three fields of expertise that are able to become world-leading and remain on top for a long run. These fields are: life sciences, clean technologies, cyber security. As a result of the research, it can be concluded that these three technological breakthrough fields are natural for Israel. The state just strengthened the trend. It was not an artificial move. The three fields have been actively developing lately. But of course there are problems, and some of them are quite serious, comprising a low level of newly created technologies usage within Israel itself, and the lack of funding, especially in biotechnologies and in some segments of clean technologies. During the last ten years Israeli officials have assumed a number of measures to stimulate the three breakthrough industries development. Their common and a very important feature is that they are designed to be taken together with private entities. It refers to the basic concept of the state implying that only private companies and financial bodies should play a major role in shaping up and evolving of all innovation-based industries. And the state’s role is to stimulate the market and to support market mechanisms when needed, as well as to develop instruments for overcoming different market failures in case they occur. This paper shows that in spite of all the problems, Israel succeeded in creating of a solid background for implementing a long-run global leadership strategy for the three selected technological breakthrough industries. 

Keywords: Israel, innovations, life sciences, biotechnology, clean technologies, cyber security, startups, alternative energy sources, technology transfer, venture capital 

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For citation:
Mar'yasis D. Spheres of Innovative Breakthrough in Israel. World Eonomy and International Relations, 2016, vol. 60, no. 3, pp. 92-100. https://doi.org/10.20542/0131-2227-2016-60-3-92-100

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