America's Struggle For Leadership In Technology

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America's Struggle For Leadership In Technology

By Jean-Claude Derian
MIT Press, 1990
309 pp. $29.95

Several years in the French embassy in Washington in the mid-1980s gave Derian interesting opportunities to study American successes and failures in both commercial and defense technology. Behind many of these stories, which are familiar but well told, he sees interesting and suggestive contrasts in the approach to research and development by "two cultures"-one "sheltered" by government and one "exposed" to international competition. He looks at the same approaches in Europe and Japan. Although he believes that the American system "is slowly adjusting to its new international environment," he is not altogether persuasive on that point, nor does he try to work out just where that process will leave us.

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