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Visiting Professor GES 4.0
Name: Rasmus Lema
Location: 69 Kingsway Ave, Auckland Park, Johannesburg, 2092 Johannesburg Business School
SARChI TRCTI Visiting Scholars  Staff Members

Contact Details:
Tel: 011 559 1808


About Prof Rasmus Lema

Rasmus Lema is a development economist with 20 years of experience in research, consultancy and teaching. His areas of specialisation are sustainable industrialisation, technological learning and green transformations.

He has a strong track record in leading international research projects. He has published extensively in top academic journals, and he is known for agenda setting research and theoretical development. As a frequent adviser to development and STI agencies he is known for connecting original research to policy.

He is an editor of Innovation and Development and member of the Scientific Board at the Global Network for Economics of Learning, Innovation, and Competence Building Systems (Globelics).


DPhil in Development Studies, University of Sussex
MSc in Development and Public Administration, Roskilde University

Graduate Certificate in International Studies, University of Sydney

 Research interests

Green Transformations; New and emerging technologies; Innovation and Industrial policy; Global Value Chains


 Selected publications

Lema, R., Fu, X., & Rabellotti, R. (2021). Green windows of opportunity: latecomer development in the age of transformation toward sustainability. Industrial and Corporate Change, 29(5), 1193–1209.

Lema, R., Bhamidipati, P. L., Gregersen, C., Hansen, U. E., & Kirchherr, J. (2021). China’s investments in renewable energy in Africa: Creating co-benefits or just cashing-in? World Development, 141, 105365.

Lema, R., Pietrobelli, C., & Rabellotti, R. (2019). Innovation in global value chains. In S. Ponte, G. Gereffi, & G. Raj-Reichert (Eds.), Handbook on Global Value Chains (pp. 370–384). Cheltenham: Edward Elgar Publishing.

Lema, R., Rabellotti, R., & Gehl Sampath, P. (2018). Innovation Trajectories in Developing Countries: Co-evolution of Global Value Chains and Innovation Systems. The European Journal of Development Research, 30(3), 345–363.

Lema, R., Hanlin, R., Hansen, U. E., & Nzila, C. (2018). Renewable electrification and local capability formation: Linkages and interactive learning. Energy Policy, 117(August 2017), 326–339.

Lema, A., & Lema, R. (2016). Low-carbon innovation and technology transfer in latecomer countries. Technological Forecasting and Social Change, 104, 223–236.

Lema, R., Quadros, R., & Schmitz, H. (2015). Reorganising global value chains and building innovation capabilities in Brazil and India. Research Policy, 44(7), 1376–1386.

Lema, R., Kraemer-Mbula, E., & Rakas, M. (2021). Innovation in developing countries: examining two decades of research. Innovation and Development, 11(2/3), 1–22.

Lema, R., Pietrobelli, C., Rabellotti, R., & Vezzani, A. (2021). Deepening or delinking? Innovative capacity and global value chain participation in the IT industry. Industrial and Corporate Change.