Carlota Perez (Spanish: Carlota Pérez; born September 20, 1939 in Caracas) is a British-Venezuelan scholar specialized on technology and socio-economic development. She researches the concept of Techno-Economic Paradigm Shifts and the theory of great surges, a further development of Schumpeter's work on Kondratieff waves. In 2012 she was awarded the Silver Kondratieff Medal by the International N. D. Kondratieff Foundation.
Perez is currently Honorary Professor at the Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose (IIPP) at University College London; Honorary Professor at SPRU, University of Sussex; and Adjunct Professor of Technology and Socio-Economic Development at Tallinn University of Technology, Tallinn, Estonia. She is also the Academic-in-Residence at Anthemis UK. From 2013 to 2016 she was Centennial Professor at the London School of Economics, where she remains a Visiting Professor. Prior to that she was affiliated to CERF (Cambridge Endowment for Research in Finance) and the Judge Business School at the University of Cambridge. She regularly gives visiting lectures at other universities around the world.
Her career began at the Central University of Venezuela where she studied the structural causes of the energy crisis in the mid-1970s and then in the civil service at the Institute of Foreign Trade in relation to the technology aspects of the North-South Dialogue (1975–1977). As founding Director of Technology in the Ministry of Industry (1980–1983), she established the first venture capital agency, FINTEC. She has been consultant to most of the major public and private companies in Venezuela, in particular to INTEVEP, the Research and Development affiliate of PDVSA, the national petroleum company.
As international consultant, she has worked for various multilateral organizations, including the OECD, the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, UNESCO, United Nations Industrial Development Organization, the United Nations Development Programme, the Andean Pact and the World Bank. She also acts as consultant for major corporations (including IBM, Ericsson, Telefónica, Cisco, Sogeti, ING Bank and the cooperative Mondragon), industry associations, Ministries and Councils of Industry, Science and Technology, R&D institutes and development banks in most countries in Latin America and in other regions (notably Canada, Norway and Estonia). Several elements of the European Union's Lisbon Strategy were based on her work, and in 2015 she was Chair of the European Commission’s Horizon 2020 Expert Group for Green Growth and Jobs.
Carlota Perez is a neo-Schumpeterian, and Christopher Freeman was her mentor, with whom she closely collaborated. Her articles, from the early 1980s, have contributed to the present understanding of the relationship between basic innovations, technical and institutional change, and economic development. Her 2002 book Technological Revolutions and Financial Capital has had a very positive response from academics as well as from the financial and the technology-based business communities. The book has contributed to a Schumpeterian understanding of the link between innovation and financial dynamics. In it Perez, speaking from 2002, lays out a history of five technological revolutions that follow a similar pattern of bang, bust and, hopefully, renewal.
So during this period, financial capital generates a powerful magnet to attract investment into the new areas, hence accelerating the hold of the paradigm on what becomes the 'new economy'.
In a world of capital gains, real estate bubbles and foreign adventures with money, all notion of the real value of anything is lost. Uncontrollable asset inflation sets in while debt mounts at a reckless rhythm; much of it to enter the casino.— Carlota Perez, Technological Revolutions and Financial Capital, p. 75
In 2000 Perez co-founded The Other Canon, a center and network for heterodox economics research, with - amongst others - main founder and executive chairman Erik Reinert. Having collaborated with Mariana Mazzucato for the past decade, she was the founding Honorary Professor at Mazzucato's new Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose at UCL, where does research and lectures on the undergraduate and MPA programmes.
- Carlota Perez, Leo Johnson, Art Kleiner. Are We on the Verge of a Golden Age?. August 28, 2017.
- Carlota Perez. Technological Revolutions and Financial Capital: The Dynamics of Bubbles and Golden Ages. London: Elgar 2002. (ISBN 1-84376-331-1)
- Wolfgang Drechsler, Rainer Kattel and Erik S. Reinert, eds. Techno-Economic Paradigms: Essays in Honour of Carlota Perez. London: Anthem, 2009. (ISBN 9781843317852)
- Carlota Perez.Technological revolutions and techno-economic paradigms.: in Working Papers in Technology Governance and Economic Dynamics, Working Paper No. 20, Tallinn: Norway and Tallinn University of Technology, Tallinn 2009.
- Techno-Economic Paradigms: Essays in Honour of Carlota Perez, Anthem Press, 2009, p. 395.
- About - Carlota Perez
- The International N. D. Kondratieff Foundation Archived October 12, 2013, at the Wayback Machine
- Staff profile at the Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose (IIPP), University College London
- Staff profile at the Science Policy Research Unit (SPRU), University of Sussex
- Academic Staff list for the Technology Governance and Digital Transformation Masters at TalTech (TTU)
- About Us: Anthemis
- Visiting Fellows, School of International Development, London School of Economics
- Report of the European Commission Expert Group on Green Growth and Jobs
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original. Retrieved 2009-10-12
- Study with us: Programmes at the Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose (IIPP), University College London