Technical development, so vital for developing countries to improve their economic status as well as keep pace with developed countries, is severely lacking. This lack stems from a variety of causes, including shortages of funds and adequately trained manpower; inability to maintain technological advancements; unwillingness to change older, established modus operandi; and a reluctance of industrialized countries to freely give technological equipment and advice, as that would lessen their hold over the developing countries.
[Developing countries] Science is usually institutionally stronger than technology in developing countries, and it has greater prestige. The central national bodies for science and technology tend to be dominated by scientists, to be closely oriented towards research and to be closely linked to universities. They are not usually closely linked to industry or the engineering community, where technology is generated, modified, adapted and used. In the 1970s, the higher education and service sectors absorbed more than 6 out of 10 research and development (R and D) personnel (compared with the developed and centrally planned economies where between one-half and three-quarters of R and D personnel were employed in the directly productive sector). The difference was even greater in spending terms. Such differences help to explain the smaller capacity of the developing countries to use emerging technologies or innovations effectively and extensively. There is evidence in the 1980s of a shift in developing countries toward locating more R and D in the productive sector, and within it a greater focus on "integrated research", especially in developing countries where industry has become diversified and contributes substantially to total output.