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A toolkit of policies to promote innovation

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  • Nicholas Bloom
  • John Van Reenen
  • Heidi Williams

Abstract

Economic theory suggests that market economies are likely to under-provide innovation due to the public good nature of knowledge. Empirical evidence from the US and other advanced economies supports this idea. We summarize the pros and cons of different policy instruments for promoting innovation and provide a basic "toolkit" describing which policies are most effective, based on our reading of the evidence. In the short-run, R&D tax credits or direct public funding seem the most productive, but in the longer-run increasing the supply of human capital (e.g. relaxing immigration rules or expanding university STEM admissions) are likely more effective.

Suggested Citation

  • Nicholas Bloom & John Van Reenen & Heidi Williams, 2019. "A toolkit of policies to promote innovation," CEP Discussion Papers dp1634, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  • Handle: RePEc:cep:cepdps:dp1634
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Innovation; R&D; intellectual property; tax; competition; growth;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • O31 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Innovation and Invention: Processes and Incentives
    • O32 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Management of Technological Innovation and R&D

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