Advantage: How American Innovation Can Overcome the Asian Challenge by Adam Segal

Dr Cherian Samuel is Research Fellow at Manohar Parrikar Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses, New Delhi. Click here for detailed profile.
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  • January 2013
    Book Review

    Advantage: How American Innovation Can Overcome the Asian Challenge follows a long line of books that tap into America's preoccupation with retaining its pole position as the repository of cutting edge technology, and the resultant dominance this offers it across the political, economic and military spectrum. These books are a subset within the wider pre-occupation of responding to the rise of the Asian powers, and a shift of the geopolitical centre of gravity from the Euro-Atlantic to the Asian landmass.

    With the blurring of erstwhile borders between military and civilian technologies, and the transition from the industrial era to a knowledge-based economy, hitting the sweet spot in the innovation ecosystem is seen as key to technological dominance. This book examines the inherent strengths of the United States in this regard, and compares them with those of its challengers. Adam Segal is uniquely positioned to do that, being a long-time student of China's science and technology policies. He examines the strengths and weaknesses not only of the United States, but also of those he considers its two main challengers, India and China.