Silicon Valley oder Nachfrageförderung?

BELLEVUE, WASHINGTON – Jeder möchte wissen, wie das nächste Silicon Valley entstehen könnte: eine Innovationsdrehscheibe, die Talente und Kapital anzieht sowie Arbeitsplätze, Unternehmen und neue Industrien schafft. Die Regierungen der Industriestaaten strampeln sich ab, Technologien zu subventionieren, die das nächste „große Ding“ werden könnten. Politiker der Schwellenländer hoffen, Anreize wie Steuererleichterungen oder Gratisgrundstücke würden Erneuerer dazu bewegen, sich dort anzusiedeln und Wohlstand zu bringen. Aber die meisten dieser gut gemeinten Programme vernachlässigen einen entscheidenden Punkt: die Nachfrage.

Die gemeinsame Kraft hinter allen Hochtechnologiezentren und wichtigen Erfindungen war die Nachfrage nach Innovationen in bestimmten technischen Bereichen. Technologische Durchbrüche wie Antibiotika oder Automobile waren eine Antwort auf ein zwingendes Bedürfnis einer großen Anzahl von Konsumenten. Regierungsprojekte wie das Apollo-Programm der Vereinigten Staaten – um einen Mann zum Mond zu schicken – trieben die Nachfrage nach grundlegenderen Technologien an (nach Erfindungen, nach denen bisher niemand gefragt hatte).

Silicon Valley selbst war ein Ergebnis von Nachfrage. Das US-Verteidigungsministerium schloss Verträge in zweistelliger Milliardenhöhe über Mikroelektronik ab, was das Risiko der Innovatoren verringerte und zu einer Infrastruktur führte, die das Wachstum junger Unternehmen förderte.

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