Here is an article from Wired that talks about the concerns of the breakthrough technology innovation artists of the 20th Century. Mr. Gordon Moore (Intel Co-Founder) was awarded the lifetime achievement award by The Marconi Society in 2006. An excerpt from the above article states:
"Silver-haired and graciously unassuming, Moore voiced concern that corporate R&D is moving away from the kind of fundamental research that wins Nobel Prizes and toward a narrow focus on business goals. "That's great for the company," he said, "but somebody has to fill the gap."
I believe the gap is being filled slowly but surely in the emerging and frontier markets. Simply because the desperation for innovation does not seem to exist in the developed world anymore or does it?
Satiated people do not innovate!
Update - See an example from a 3rd world country here.