NTUA Professor Yannis Caloghirou edited in Greek the book “The Entrepreneurial State – debunking public vs. private sector myths” of Mariana Mazzucato, Professor of Economics at the University of Sussex (SPRU), where he holds the seat RM Phillis in Science and Technology Policy. This book was included in the Financial Times book list for 2013.
In the book’s introduction, Yannis Caloghirou states:
“When the State is organized effectively, his hand is steady, providing the vision and providing the impetus for things to happen [...] Such actions aim to strengthen the courage of private enterprises. And this requires not perceive the State as a mere “facilitator” of economic growth. It is a key partner of the private sector – and often the most daring, one who voluntarily undertake those risks that the private sector does not.”
“The innovative and ultimately subversive character of Mariana Mazzucato’s book has been recognized by everyone, while its contribution to the understanding of the real socio-economic and business processes associated with the technological and business development is indisputable.”
Myths – what we think about the role of the State
According to the embedded view:
1st myth: the State can not effectively play the role of entrepreneur, because it does not seek profit. It acts only when the market fails.
2nd myth: the State must not make productive investments, because it displaces in this way private investors (crowding out).
3rd myth: the State does not innovate, it simply intervenes to mitigate the weaknesses of economy function. And it diffuses into society – through redistributive policies – the benefits that have been produced privately.
In this highly original book, Mariana Mazzucato overturns these myths and analyzes with clarity her position: The State Innovates, by investing in areas of particularly high risk that individuals are not willing to take. Public investment motivates and reinforces the private investment in the field of Higher Education, Research, Development and Technology, transferring the embedded knowledge in private companies.
Therefore, the State has the dominant role of the long-term growth lever in the contemporary capitalism.
Yannis Caloghirou was interviewed about this topic by the journalist Aris Tolios of Athens 9.84 radio station (listen from 36:55 to 44:10)