Država je tista, ki zagotavlja inovacije, ne zasebni sektor

Bolj pravilno bi se naslov moral glasiti: Država je tista, ki zagotavlja pogoje za inovacije, ne zasebni sektor. Mariana Mazzucato v kultni knjigi The interpreneurial state, dokumentira, da je pri vseh velikih inovacijah in izdelkih, ki na njihovi osnovi prinašajo velik poslovni uspeh korporacijam, imela ključno vlogo država. Prvič, država je tista, ki financira bazične raziskave, ki nato privedejo do inovacij. Država je tista, ki je financirala razvoj iskalne kode za Google. Država je tista, ki je financirala razvoj komponent, ki jih je Apple tako brilijantno zložil v iPhone. Država je tista, ki je financirala razvoj tehnologij, ki “pametne telefone” delajo pametne – internet, WiFi, GPS, SIRI itd.

Drugič, država je tista, ki prevzame vse rizike neuspeha od vlaganj v razvoj in nove tehnologije. Bazične raziskave so za podjetja preveč negotove in nedonosne. Podjetja ne vedo, ali bodo vlaganja sploh obrodila sadove, hkrati pa so sadovi teh vlaganj predaleč v prihodnosti. Podjetij ne zanimajo niti inovacije in patenti, zanimajo jih že izdelani prototipi. Podjetja želijo zgolj hitre, velike in gotove donose. Povsem razumljivo iz njihovega gledišča.

Toda to pomeni, da morajo podjetniki začeti spoštovati državo, kajti država jim zagotavlja poslovno okolje, država jim zagotavlja pravno državo in varnost, država jim izobražuje kadre, država organizira zdravstvo, da so njihovi zaposleni zdravi in da redno prihajajo v službo, država zanje financira bazične raziskave, država jim daje subvencije za nove zaposlitve, država jim pokrije stroške njihovih vlaganj v raziskave in razvoj, država jim pokrije del investicijskih vlaganj. Država podjetnikom pokrije večino največjih tveganj. Vse, kar morajo podjetniki v zameno narediti, je, da plačujejo davke in da državi povrnejo del stroškov, ki jih ima s tem, ko za podjetnike financira celotno ugodno poslovno okolje.

Je to tako težko razumeti?

Yes, innovation depends on bold entrepreneurship. But the entity that takes the boldest risks and achieves the biggest breakthroughs is not the private sector; it is the much-maligned state.

Mazzucato notes that “75 per cent of the new molecular entities [approved by the Food and Drug Administration between 1993 and 2004] trace their research … to publicly funded National Institutes of Health (NIH) labs in the US”. The UK’s Medical Research Council discovered monoclonal antibodies, which are the foundation of biotechnology. Such discoveries are then handed cheaply to private companies that reap huge profits.

A perhaps even more potent example is the information and communications revolution. The US National Science Foundation funded the algorithm that drove Google’s search engine. Early funding for Apple came from the US government’s Small Business Investment Company. Moreover, “All the technologies which make the iPhone ‘smart’ are also state-funded … the internet, wireless networks, the global positioning system, microelectronics, touchscreen displays and the latest voice-activated SIRI personal assistant.” Apple put this together, brilliantly. But it was gathering the fruit of seven decades of state-supported innovation.

Why is the state’s role so important? The answer lies in the huge uncertainties, time spans and costs associated with fundamental, science-based innovation. Private companies cannot and will not bear these costs, partly because they cannot be sure to reap the fruits and partly because these fruits lie so far in the future.

Vir: Martin Wolf, Financial Times

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