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Medical devices industries in developing countries

Barriers to entry: Comparative analysis of development of pharmaceutical and medical device industries in India

Medical device and Pharmaceutical industry forms important industries for containment of healthcare cost and access of healthcare to poor people. Over the last decade the Indian pharmaceutical industry has emerged as a leading supplier of generic drugs to both developing and developed countries while India still imports almost 70% of medical devices from overseas. This creates immense problem for securing access of these devices to much needed poor population of India as well as other developing countries and that forms focus of research on medical device industries in developing countries.

The movement of the Indian pharmaceutical industry along the R&D value chain represents a remarkable shift for from public sector driven to private sector oriented innovation. Indian industry moved from an importer of drugs to imitator of drugs and a major supplier of medicines to other developing and advance countries. The Indian government?s industrial policies and adoption of weak regulatory system played a crucial role in shaping development of innovation capability. However compare to success of Indian pharmaceutical industry other crucial sectors in healthcare sector such as medical device industry has not witnessed similar growth. This research proposes to study factors that hampered development in the medical device industry in India.


Dinar Kale


Dinar Kale has conducted a pilot project with IKD funding to investigate factors that led to current status of industry and creating links with stakeholders for proposed research proposal. Main aim of the initial field study was to understand impact of public policy and capability development in high-tech industry in the developing countries. Data analysis was carried out using theoretical framework based on innovation systems literature.

Two hypothesis were tested:

  1. nature of knowledge complexities involved in the creation of innovation can create important barriers to imitation than regulatory tools
  2. just availability of large markets is not enough to create incentives for entrepreneurship; nature of market does affect entrepreneurship


In search of missing hand of state?: The case of Indian medical device industry, paper presented at Globelics conference in 2011 at Buenos Aires.

A view against the grain: The case of Argentinian stem cell and Indian medical device industry, Paper to be presented at British International Studies Association conference in 2012 at Edinburgh with Shawn Harmon

Regulation quagmire and arrested development in the Indian medical device industry, paper to be presented at the Schumpeter conference in 2012 at Brisbane, Australia.

Contact us

To find out more about our work, or to discuss a potential project, please contact:

International Development Research Office
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
The Open University
Walton Hall
Milton Keynes
United Kingdom

T: +44 (0)1908 858502