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Measuring Total Factor Productivity, Technical Change And The Rate Of Returns To Research And Development

  • Sang V Nguyen
  • Edward C Kokkelenberg

Recent research indicates that estimates of the effect of research and development (R&D) on total factor productivity growth are sensitive to different measures of total factor productivity. In this paper, we use establishment level data for the flat glass industry extracted from the Census Bureau's Longitudinal Research Database (LRD) to construct three competing measures of total factor productivity. We then use these measures to estimate the conventional R&D intensity model. Our empirical results support previous finding that the estimated coefficients of the model are sensitive to the measurement of total factor productivity. Also, when using microdata and more detailed modeling, R&D is found to be a significant factor influencing productivity growth. Finally, for the flat glass industry, a specific technical change index capturing the learning-by-doing process appears to be superior to the conventional time trend index.

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File URL: ftp://ftp2.census.gov/ces/wp/1991/CES-WP-91-03.pdf
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Paper provided by Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau in its series Working Papers with number 91-3.

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Date of creation: May 1991
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Handle: RePEc:cen:wpaper:91-3
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  1. Diewert, Walter E & Wales, Terence J, 1987. "Flexible Functional Forms and Global Curvature Conditions," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 55(1), pages 43-68, January.
  2. Donald Siegel & Frank R Lichtenberg, 1989. "Using Linked Census R&D-Lrd Data To Analyze The Effect Of R&D Investment On Total Factor Productivity Growth," Working Papers 89-2, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
  3. Robert E. Hall, 1986. "The Relation Between Price and Marginal Cost in U.S. Industry," NBER Working Papers 1785, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Maddison, Angus, 1987. "Growth and Slowdown in Advanced Capitalist Economies: Techniques of Quantitative Assessment," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 25(2), pages 649-98, June.
  5. Link, Albert N, 1980. "Firm Size and Efficient Entrepreneurial Activity: A Reformulation of the Schumpeter Hypothesis," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 88(4), pages 771-82, August.
  6. Berndt, Ernst R & Khaled, Mohammed S, 1979. "Parametric Productivity Measurement and Choice among Flexible Functional Forms," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 87(6), pages 1220-45, December.
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