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Productivity growth, R&D and the rôle of international collaborative agreements: some évidence for Belgian manufacturing companies

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  • Michele Cincera
  • Lieselot Kempen
  • Bruno Van Pottelsberghe
  • Reinhilde Veugelers
  • Carolina Villegas Sanchez

Abstract

Using Belgian firm level data on R&D and productivity, this paper provides further evidence on the important role of knowledge in explaining performance at the firm level, by augmenting the classical productivity growth approach not only with own R&D expenditures, but also with R&D cooperation. Taking the view that co-operation in R&D gives access to external know-how, the paper provides a new view on the mechanisms through which R&D spillovers may impact firm's output growth. Given the small open character of the Belgian economy, we focus especially on international technology diffusion and the role of cooperation with partners abroad. Beyond own R&D, the analysis shows support for international R&D cooperation to significantly improve firm productivity growth and more in particular, international cooperation with customers, suppliers or other companies, which reflects more applied international R&D co-operative activities. We further explored the role of international co-operative agreements, and more particularly whether it is used as a mechanism to access externally available know- how. Our proxies for available external know-how which (foreign) cooperation would give access to, did not provide conclusive evidence on R&D cooperation as a channel of transfer for knowledge spillovers. Overall, international R&D co-operation significantly increases a firm's output growth. However, the exact mechanisms how this cooperation enhances firm performance need further investigation.

Suggested Citation

  • Michele Cincera & Lieselot Kempen & Bruno Van Pottelsberghe & Reinhilde Veugelers & Carolina Villegas Sanchez, 2003. "Productivity growth, R&D and the rôle of international collaborative agreements: some évidence for Belgian manufacturing companies," Brussels Economic Review, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles, vol. 46(3), pages 107-140.
  • Handle: RePEc:bxr:bxrceb:y:2003:v:46:i:3:p:107-140
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    Cited by:

    1. Aschhoff, Birgit & Schmidt, Tobias, 2006. "Empirical evidence on the success of R&D co-operation: Happy together?," ZEW Discussion Papers 06-059, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
    2. Luis Aguiar & Philippe Gagnepain, 2011. "European Cooperative R&D And Firm Performance," Université Paris1 Panthéon-Sorbonne (Post-Print and Working Papers) hal-00622969, HAL.
    3. Spyros Arvanitis, 2012. "How do different motives for R&D cooperation affect firm performance? – An analysis based on Swiss micro data," Journal of Evolutionary Economics, Springer, pages 981-1007.
    4. Carboni, Oliviero A., 2012. "An empirical investigation of the determinants of R&D cooperation: An application of the inverse hyperbolic sine transformation," Research in Economics, Elsevier, pages 131-141.
    5. Ki H. Kang & Jina Kang, 2009. "Do External Knowledge Sourcing Methods Matter in Service Innovation? Analysis of South Korean Service Firms," TEMEP Discussion Papers 200908, Seoul National University; Technology Management, Economics, and Policy Program (TEMEP), revised Aug 2009.
    6. Birgit Aschhoff & Tobias Schmidt, 2008. "Empirical Evidence on the Success of R&D Cooperation—Happy Together?," Review of Industrial Organization, Springer;The Industrial Organization Society, vol. 33(1), pages 41-62, August.
    7. Magdalena, Olczyk & Marzena, Starnawska & Izabela, Richter, 2011. "Improvement of cooperation among SMEs and other stakeholders as means of fostering innovation," MPRA Paper 33654, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 2011.
    8. Grammig, Joachim & Schrimpf, Andreas, 2009. "Asset pricing with a reference level of consumption: New evidence from the cross-section of stock returns," Review of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(3), pages 113-123, August.
    9. Aguiar Wicht, Luis & Gagnepain, Philippe, 2013. "European Cooperative R&D and Firm Performance: Evidence Based on Funding Differences in Key Actions," CEPR Discussion Papers 9426, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    10. Luis Aguiar & Philippe Gagnepain, 2017. "European cooperative R&D and firm performance: Evidence based on funding differences in key actions," Post-Print halshs-01630665, HAL.
    11. Martin Srholec, 2014. "Cooperation and Innovative Performance of Firms: Panel Data Evidence from the Czech Republic, Norway and the UK," Journal of the Knowledge Economy, Springer;Portland International Center for Management of Engineering and Technology (PICMET), pages 133-155.
    12. Ascension Barajas & Elena Huergo & Lourdes Moreno, 2012. "Measuring the economic impact of research joint ventures supported by the EU Framework Programme," The Journal of Technology Transfer, Springer, vol. 37(6), pages 917-942, December.
    13. Schmidt, Tobias, 2007. "Motives for Innovation Co-operation? Evidence from the Canadian Survey of Innovation," ZEW Discussion Papers 07-018, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
    14. Spyros Arvanitis, 2009. "How do different motives for R&D cooperation affect firm performance?," KOF Working papers 09-233, KOF Swiss Economic Institute, ETH Zurich.
    15. Fier, Andreas & Aschhoff, Birgit & Löhlein, Heide, 2006. "Detecting Behavioural Additionality: An Empirical Study on the Impact of Public R&D Funding on Firms' Cooperative Behaviour in Germany," ZEW Discussion Papers 06-037, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
    16. Michele Cincera & Pierre De Clercq & Thomas Gillet, 2015. "Optimal Openness Level and Economic Performance of Firms: Evidence from Belgian CIS Data," iCite Working Papers 2015-14, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
    17. Lhuillery, Stéphane & Pfister, Etienne, 2009. "R&D cooperation and failures in innovation projects: Empirical evidence from French CIS data," Research Policy, Elsevier, pages 45-57.
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    19. Erika Raquel Badillo & Rosina Moreno, 2014. "“Does absorptive capacity determine collaborative research returns to innovation? A geographical dimension”," IREA Working Papers 201428, University of Barcelona, Research Institute of Applied Economics, revised Nov 2014.
    20. Barajas, A. & Huergo, E. & Moreno, L., 2012. "The Impact of International Research Joint Ventures on SMEs Performance," MPRA Paper 36306, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    21. Heshmati Almas & Karlson Nils & Box Marcus, 2013. "Generality, State Neutrality and Unemployment in the OECD," Global Economy Journal, De Gruyter, pages 333-358.
    22. repec:eee:indorg:v:53:y:2017:i:c:p:1-31 is not listed on IDEAS
    23. Scandura, Alessandra, 2016. "University–industry collaboration and firms’ R&D effort," Research Policy, Elsevier, pages 1907-1922.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Productivity growth; R&D; International R&D coopérations; Belgian firms;

    JEL classification:

    • O12 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Microeconomic Analyses of Economic Development
    • O19 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - International Linkages to Development; Role of International Organizations

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