This policy paper, published by the International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development (ICTSD), addresses technology transfer issues in developing countries and considers current intellectual property rights.

The author makes practical recommendations to least developed countries (LDCs) wanting to use technology transfer as an effective growth engine, and to developed countries who must comply with the World Trade Organisation (WTO) Agreement on Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS).

The paper finds that technology transfer in LDCs is hindered by trade and foreign investment shortfalls, and an inability to disseminate new technologies throughout the economy.

The author suggests a shift to local authority decisionmaking over technology transfer and assistance to socially beneficial projects with low expected profitability.