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Public gains from entrepreneurial research: Inferences about the economic value of public support of the Small Business Innovation Research program

  • Stuart D. Allen
  • Stephen K. Layson
  • Albert N. Link

This article presents a systematic analysis of the net economic benefits associated with the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program. We offer a derivation of producer and consumer surplus to estimate economic benefits. Fundamental to the implementation of these models is a specific value of the elasticity of demand, but in its absence we estimate what its value would be when the benefit-to-cost ratio associated with public support of the SBIR program equals unity. We infer from these calculations, and from general knowledge about the ability of SBIR-funded firms to exploit their monopoly position, that the SBIR program likely generates positive net economic benefits to society. Copyright The Author 2012. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com, Oxford University Press.

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File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1093/reseval/rvs005
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Article provided by Oxford University Press in its journal Research Evaluation.

Volume (Year): 21 (2012)
Issue (Month): 2 (March)
Pages: 105-112

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Handle: RePEc:oup:rseval:v:21:y:2012:i:2:p:105-112
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  1. Jean Tirole, 1988. "The Theory of Industrial Organization," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262200716, June.
  2. Albert N. Link & Christopher J. Ruhm, 2013. "Bringing science to market:commercializing from NIH SBIR awards," Chapters, in: Public Support of Innovation in Entrepreneurial Firms, chapter 1, pages 3-24 Edward Elgar.
  3. Albert N. Link & John T. Scott, 2013. "Private Investor Participation and Commercialization Rates for Government-sponsored Research and Development: Would a Prediction Market Improve the Performance of the SBIR Programme?," Chapters, in: Public Support of Innovation in Entrepreneurial Firms, chapter 11, pages 157-174 Edward Elgar.
  4. Link, Albert N. & Scott, John T., 2011. "Public Goods, Public Gains: Calculating the Social Benefits of Public R&D," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199729685, March.
  5. Link, Albert N. & Scott, John T., 2011. "Employment Growth from Public Support of Innovation in Small Firms," Working Papers 11-17, University of North Carolina at Greensboro, Department of Economics.
  6. Albert N. Link & John T. Scott, 2005. "Evaluating Public Sector R&D Programs: The Advanced Technology Program's Investment in Wavelength References for Optical Fiber Communications," The Journal of Technology Transfer, Springer, vol. 30(2_2), pages 241-251, 01.
  7. Albert N. Link & John T. Scott, 2013. "The theory and practice of public-sector R&D economic impact analysis," Chapters, in: Handbook on the Theory and Practice of Program Evaluation, chapter 2, pages 15-55 Edward Elgar.
  8. Albert N. Link & John T. Scott (ed.), 2011. "The Economics of Evaluation in Public Programs," Books, Edward Elgar, number 14418, December.
  9. Albert N. Link & John T. Scott, 2013. "Governments as entrepreneur: Evaluating the commercialization success of SBIR projects," Chapters, in: Public Support of Innovation in Entrepreneurial Firms, chapter 2, pages 25-38 Edward Elgar.
  10. H. Spencer Banzhaf, 2009. "Objective or Multi-Objective? Two Historically Competing Visions for Benefit-Cost Analysis," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 85(1), pages 3-23.
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