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Reputation and Competence in Publicly Funded Science: Estimating the Effects on Research Group Productivity

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  • Ashish ARORA
  • Paul DAVID
  • Alfonso GAMBARDELLA

Abstract

This paper estimates the "production function" for scientific research publications in the field of biotechnology. it utilises an exceptionally rich and comprehensive data set pertaining to the universe of research groups that applied to a 1989-1993 research programme in biotechnology and bio-instrumentation, sponsored by the ltalian National Research Council, CNR. A structural model of the resource allocation process in scientific research guides the selection of instruments in the econometric analysis, and controls for selectivity bias effects on estimates based on the performance of funded research units. The average elasticity of research output with respect to the research budget is estimated to be 0.6; but, for a small fraction of groups led by highly prestigious Pls this elasticity approaches 1. These estimates imply, conditional on the distribution of observed productivity, that a more unequal distribution of research funds would increase research output in the short-run. Past research publication performance is found to have an important effect on expected levels of grant funding, and hence on the unit's current productivity in terms of (quality adjusted) publications. The results show that the productivity of aggregate resource expenditures supporting scientific research is critically dependent on the institutional mechanisms and criteria employed in the allocation of such resources.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by ENSAE in its journal Annals of Economics and Statistics.

Volume (Year): (1998)
Issue (Month): 49-50 ()
Pages: 163-198

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Handle: RePEc:adr:anecst:y:1998:i:49-50:p:06

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Cited by:
  1. David, Paul A. & Hall, Bronwyn H. & Toole, Andrew A., 2000. "Is public R&D a complement or substitute for private R&D? A review of the econometric evidence," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 29(4-5), pages 497-529, April.
  2. Goldfarb, Brent, 2008. "The effect of government contracting on academic research: Does the source of funding affect scientific output," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 37(1), pages 41-58, February.
  3. Nicolas Carayol, 2003. "The incentive properties of the Matthew Effect in the academic competition," Working Papers of BETA 2003-11, Bureau d'Economie Théorique et Appliquée, UDS, Strasbourg.
  4. Defazio, Daniela & Lockett, Andy & Wright, Mike, 2009. "Funding incentives, collaborative dynamics and scientific productivity: Evidence from the EU framework program," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 38(2), pages 293-305, March.
  5. Owen-Smith, Jason, 2003. "From separate systems to a hybrid order: accumulative advantage across public and private science at Research One universities," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 32(6), pages 1081-1104, June.
  6. Grimpe, Christoph, 2012. "Extramural research grants and scientists’ funding strategies: Beggars cannot be choosers?," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 41(8), pages 1448-1460.
  7. Gonzalez-Brambila, Claudia & Veloso, Francisco M., 2007. "The determinants of research output and impact: A study of Mexican researchers," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 36(7), pages 1035-1051, September.
  8. Carayol, Nicolas & Matt, Mireille, 2004. "Does research organization influence academic production?: Laboratory level evidence from a large European university," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 33(8), pages 1081-1102, October.
  9. Gonzalez-Brambila, Claudia N. & Veloso, Francisco M. & Krackhardt, David, 2013. "The impact of network embeddedness on research output," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 42(9), pages 1555-1567.
  10. Beaudry, Catherine & Allaoui, Sedki, 2012. "Impact of public and private research funding on scientific production: The case of nanotechnology," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 41(9), pages 1589-1606.
  11. Carayol, Nicolas & Matt, Mireille, 2006. "Individual and collective determinants of academic scientists' productivity," Information Economics and Policy, Elsevier, vol. 18(1), pages 55-72, March.
  12. Paul A. David & Louise C. Keely, 2005. "The Economics of Scientific Research Coalitions: Collaborative Network Formation in the Presence of Multiple Funding Agencies," Public Economics 0502004, EconWPA.

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