Ein Maß für Technologie

CAMBRIDGE – Nichts eignet sich besser, Chaos zu verursachen oder einen Konsens herbeizuführen, als eine nicht eindeutige Sprache. Ludwig Wittgenstein sagte einmal, philosophische Rätsel seien eigentlich nur die Folge einer falsch verwendeten Sprache. Die Kunst der Diplomatie hingegen liegt darin, eine Sprache zu finden, die über eine fehlende Übereinstimmung hinwegtäuscht.

Eine Idee, die die meisten Ökonomen unterschreiben würden, ist, dass abgesehen vom Mineralienreichtum der enorme Einkommensunterschied zwischen reichen und armen Ländern weder auf deren Kapital noch deren Bildung zurückzuführen ist, sondern auf "Technologie". Was also ist Technologie?

Die Antwort erklärt den ungewöhnlichen Konsens unter den Ökonomen, denn "Technologie" fällt unter eine Kategorie, die "zu keiner der oben genannten Kategorien" gehört. Ein Rest - Nobelpreisträger Robert Solow nannte ihn "Gesamtfaktorproduktivität" -, der nach der Erfassung anderer Produktionsfaktoren wie materiellem oder und menschlichem Kapital unerklärt bleibt. Wie Moses Abramovitz 1956 so treffend bemerkte, handelt es sich bei diesem Rest um nicht viel mehr als das "Maß unserer Ignoranz".

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