Ad-hoc expert meeting on rethinking institutions of development

09 - 10 May 2024
12:30-17:30 (9 May); 9.00-18:30 (10 May)
Room XXV (Building E), Palais des Nations, Geneva
, Switzerland


Transformation of the quality infrastructure ecosystems


In the modern world characterized by globally interconnected economies and fast technological change driven by frontier technologies, countries increasingly compete on the ability of firms to develop and adopt new technologies and compete in new markets.

The strengthening of firms’ quality and safety of goods and services, compliance with international standards, and development of new capabilities is a key factor for development, supported by Quality Infrastructures (QI): the ecosystem of public and private institutions that generate and diffuse experiential and applied knowledge to help domestic SMEs transforming their capabilities and meet international process and product standards in an economically sustainable manner.    

The renewed attention to industrial policies and their intersection with Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) highlight the importance of QI institutions, such as testing centers, as mechanisms for iterative collaboration and industrial development. A deeper understanding of QI can help address gaps in the recent industrial policy literature, such as the ways in which engagement with the private sector can help deepen and strengthen state capacity.



The Ad-Hoc Experts Meeting aims to advance our understanding on the role of QI institutions in supporting the development of countries’ industrial and innovation base.

In particular, the discussion will be organized around four main areas, for which an inspiring (but not binding) question is provided:

  1. The nature and role of standards-related knowledge
    What are the different sets of knowledge and skills that are vital for such firms to meet international standards as well as transform their existing organizational capabilities?
  2. The nature of innovation promoted by QI organizations and institutions
    Do QI promote the adoption of existing technologies and adaptive innovation or also frontier and radical innovation?
  3. Institutional design and governance:
    In the case of a fragmented and incomplete QI panorama as for many developing countries, is there a preferred sequence in supporting the creation of pillar organizations for QI?
  4. The political origins of institutional knowledge
    What are the political and social forces shaping the creation and configuration of QI across countries and over time?
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08 May 2024
• Prof. Richard Doner, Emory University • Prof. Gerald McDermott, University of South Carolina • Prof. Carlo Pietrobelli, UNESCO Chair at United Nations University UNU-MERIT and Roma Tre University

English  |    



Science, technology and innovation Science, technology and innovation



Mr. Antonio Vezzani 
Economic Affairs Officer
Technology and Innovation Policy Research Section
Division on Technology and Logistics