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Technological Innovation and Performance in the United Kingdom

  • Stephen Nickell
  • John Van Reenen

Over the period since 1970, Britain has improved its relative productivity performance, but there remains a significant gap in market sector productivity between Britain and both Continental Europe and the United States. Much of the gap between Britain and Continental Europe is due to lower levels of capital intensity and skill. However, even taking these into account, there remains a significant gap between Britain and the United States. This reflects not just a weakness in high tech areas but an inability to absorb best-practice techniques and methods in wide swathes of the market sector. Part of this is due to a weakness in technological innovation despite a high quality science base. This includes comparatively low and falling levels of R\&D and patenting as well as a distinct lag in the diffusion of innovations relative to other countries.

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Paper provided by Centre for Economic Performance, LSE in its series CEP Discussion Papers with number dp0488.

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Date of creation: Jan 2001
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Handle: RePEc:cep:cepdps:dp0488
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  1. Steve Bond & Julie Elston & Jacques Mairesse & Benoit Mulkay, 1997. "Financial factors and investment in Belgium, France, German and the UK: A comparison using company panel data," IFS Working Papers W97/08, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  2. Van Reenen, John, 1997. "Why has Britain had slower R&D growth?," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 26(4-5), pages 493-507, December.
  3. Crafts, Nicholas & Toniolo, Gianni, 1995. "Post-war Growth: An Overview," CEPR Discussion Papers 1095, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. Rachel Griffith & Stephen Redding & John Van Reenen, 2004. "Mapping the Two Faces of R&D: Productivity Growth in a Panel of OECD Industries," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 86(4), pages 883-895, November.
  5. Nickell, Stephen & Wadhwani, Sushil & Wall, Martin, 1992. "Productivity growth in U.K. companies, 1975-1986," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 36(5), pages 1055-1085, June.
  6. Stephen Bond & Dietmar Harhoff & John Van Reenen, 2003. "Investment, R&D and financial constraints in Britain and Germany," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 771, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  7. Bloom, Nick & Griffith, Rachel & Van Reenen, John, 2002. "Do R&D tax credits work? Evidence from a panel of countries 1979-1997," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 85(1), pages 1-31, July.
  8. Nickell, S.J., 1993. "Competition and Crporate Performance," Economics Series Working Papers 99155, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
  9. Geroski, P A, 1990. "Innovation, Technological Opportunity, and Market Structure," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 42(3), pages 586-602, July.
  10. David Miles, 1992. "Testing for short-termism in the UK stock market," Bank of England working papers 4, Bank of England.
  11. McConnell, John J. & Muscarella, Chris J., 1985. "Corporate capital expenditure decisions and the market value of the firm," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 14(3), pages 399-422, September.
  12. Robert N. McCauley & Steven A. Zimmer, 1989. "Explaining international differences in the cost of capital," Quarterly Review, Federal Reserve Bank of New York, issue Sum, pages 7-28.
  13. Bond, Stephen R & Jenkinson, Tim, 1996. "The Assessment: Investment Performance and Policy," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 12(2), pages 1-29, Summer.
  14. Bean, Charles R & Crafts, Nicholas, 1995. "British Economic Growth Since 1945: Relative Economic Decline .... and Renaissance?," CEPR Discussion Papers 1092, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  15. Timothy F. Bresnahan & Erik Brynjolfsson & Lorin M. Hitt, 2002. "Information Technology, Workplace Organization, And The Demand For Skilled Labor: Firm-Level Evidence," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 117(1), pages 339-376, February.
  16. Nicholas Crafts & Mary O'Mahony, 2001. "A perspective on UK productivity performance," Fiscal Studies, Institute for Fiscal Studies, vol. 22(3), pages 271-306, September.
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