From the Economy of Despair to the Knowledge Economy

From the Economy of Despair to the Knowledge Economy

The ancient philosophers emphasized the power of knowledge and its symbiotic relationship with human capabilities. They articulated that knowledge, when lacking the strength and power to apply it, becomes a source of profound frustration. This sentiment aligns with Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum’s assertion that the widening knowledge gap poses risks, affecting not only the economy but also stability and security, particularly for developing countries.

The concept of the knowledge economy represents a shift from the traditional economy, where the prevailing definition was to prepare for tomorrow’s demands. Today’s economy, as exemplified by Sheikh Mohammed’s metaphor of using yesterday’s trees as wood for today, emphasizes the utilization of past resources for present opportunities.

The economic journey, starting with simple agricultural practices, evolved with scientific development into an industrial economy, notably shaped by the industrial revolution in Europe. The knowledge economy, a result of technological and cognitive advancements, lacks a specific definition but is characterized by the dominance of information and technology in shaping production methods and marketing opportunities.

The transition from a traditional to a knowledge economy involves measurable features, with a focus on human capital. Higher-quality education and talent management positively impact society, making talented individuals, knowledge, and traditional capital the real wealth of nations. Pillars of this transformation include innovation, science, knowledge investment, strategic planning, justice, corruption eradication, good governance, healthcare, and youth empowerment.

The challenges in transitioning to a knowledge economy are prominent in the Arab world, necessitating efforts to develop the education system. The emergence of new educational types, such as simulations using artificial intelligence devices like augmented reality and virtualization, poses challenges and requires substantial efforts. Additionally, the trend towards investing in knowledge threatens the persistence of superstitions, echoing historical observations by philosophers like David Hume and Freud.

In conclusion, the shift to a knowledge economy is a multifaceted process with challenges that demand attention. By investing in education, promoting innovation, and fostering environments conducive to knowledge acceptance, nations can successfully navigate this transition and harness the potential of a knowledge-based economy.


Author : Manahel Thabet
Published November 13, 2017
Al Bayan Newspaper

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