In a newly released book, Professor Calestous Juma of . . . Harvard . . . chronicles the history of . . . opposition to change over 600 years. The Conversation Africa’s Samantha Spooner asked Juma about his main findings.
Your study tracks resistance to new technologies and innovations. What were the main drivers of this resistance?
. . . .People do not oppose technologies simply because they are new or because they are ignorant. They resist loss. The loss can be in the form of income, identity, worldview or power.
. . . .The perception of loss can be amplified by factors such as social inequity. . . .
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Transgenic crops. . . continue to be challenged across Africa, partly because of the perceived risks that they create for incumbent farming systems. . . .
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. . . . Much of the opposition comes from a deep feeling of being excluded from the technology. This is then reflected in rejection of products that are developed without local input.
A large part of the solution lies in designing inclusive innovation strategies . . . .
Technological abundance, coupled with political reforms that seek to reduce inequities, offers the best chance for humanity to benefit from its most important traits – creativity and innovation.
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