Nanotechnology Platforms and Sectoral Diffusion Patterns in Drug, Cosmetics and Food Delivery Systems: A Historical, Empirical and Theoretical Study of Technological Convergence Across Previously Distinct Industries
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The fundamental proposition investigated in this paper is that the nanotechnologies developed for each of these different market sectors have the potential to diffuse out of their vertical market across to the other industries. A typical example is in the use of encapsulation technologies such as liposomes, which are already finding applications in the delivery of anti‐cancer drugs, skin nutrients in cosmetics and flavors in the food industry. The thesis combines an in‐depth understanding of the emerging science base at the nanoscale with an investigation of what the implications might be for the economics of technical change, the process of diffusion of generic technology platforms and the convergence of previously separate industries and markets. In addition with huge government funding, it is important to understand the pace and nature of this convergence. As such this is a pioneering study in areas, which although little understood at present, are of increasing importance in the economics of innovation, national systems of innovation and public policy within and between knowledge‐based economies.