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The Impact of R&D Investment on Productivity--New Evidence Using Linked R&D-LRD Data

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  • Lichtenberg, Frank R
  • Siegel, Donald

Abstract

This paper uses confidential Census longitudinal microdata to examine the association between R&D and productivity for the period 1972-85. These data allow for significant improvements in measurement and model specification, yielding more precise estimates of the returns to R&D. The authors' results confirm the findings of existing studies: (1) positive returns to R&D investment; (2) higher returns to company-financed research; and (3) a productivity "premium" on basic research. These results are robust to adjustments for "influential outliers." Also, the authors' evidence suggests that the return to company-financed R&D is an increasing function of firm size. Copyright 1991 by Oxford University Press.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Western Economic Association International in its journal Economic Inquiry.

Volume (Year): 29 (1991)
Issue (Month): 2 (April)
Pages: 203-29

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Handle: RePEc:oup:ecinqu:v:29:y:1991:i:2:p:203-29

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  1. Wesley M. Cohen & Richard C. Levin & David C. Mowery, 1987. "Firm Size and R&D Intensity: A Re-Examination," NBER Working Papers 2205, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Link, Albert N, 1981. "Basic Research and Productivity Increase in Manufacturing: Additional Evidence," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 71(5), pages 1111-12, December.
  3. Kim B. Clark & Zvi Griliches, 1984. "Productivity Growth and R&D at the Business Level: Results from the PIMS Data Base," NBER Chapters, in: R & D, Patents, and Productivity, pages 393-416 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Minasian, Jora R, 1969. "Research and Development, Production Functions, and Rates of Return," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 59(2), pages 80-85, May.
  5. Stern, Robert M & Baum, Christopher F & Greene, Mark N, 1979. "Evidence on Structural Change in the Demand for Aggregate U.S. Imports and Exports," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 87(1), pages 179-92, February.
  6. William D. Nordhaus, 1980. "Policy Responses to the Productivity Slowdown," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 555, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  7. Mansfield, Edwin, 1980. "Basic Research and Productivity Increase in Manufacturing," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 70(5), pages 863-73, December.
  8. Zvi Griliches, 1998. "Issues in Assessing the Contribution of Research and Development to Productivity Growth," NBER Chapters, in: R&D and Productivity: The Econometric Evidence, pages 17-45 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Cohen, Wesley M & Levin, Richard C & Mowery, David C, 1987. "Firm Size and R&D Intensity: A Re-examination," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 35(4), pages 543-65, June.
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