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The Impact of Higher Education Institution-Firm Knowledge Links on Firm-level Productivity in Britain

Listed author(s):
  • Harris, Richard
  • Moffat, John
  • Lib, Qian Cher

This paper estimates whether both sourcing knowledge from and/or cooperating on innovation with HEIs (Higher Education Institutions)1 impacts on establishment-level total factor productivity (TFP) using a dataset created by merging the UK government’s Community Innovation Survey (CIS) with the Annual Respondents Database (ARD). It also considers whether higher graduate employment (as a measure of human capital) also impacts positively on TFP at the establishment-level. Many studies have investigated the relationship between university-firm knowledge links and innovation (see, for example, Mansfield, 1991; Becker, 2003; Thorn et al, 2007). Most of these studies find a positive impact. Fewer studies have investigated the impact of university-firm knowledge links on productivity. Belderbos et al. (2004), using the Dutch CIS, find that cooperation with universities has no statistically significant impact on the growth of labour productivity. Medda et al. (2005) find no statistically significant effect of collaborative research undertaken by Italian manufacturing firms and universities on the growth of TFP. Arvanitis et al. (2008), using Swiss data, show that university-firm knowledge and technology transfer has both a direct impact on labour productivity and an indirect impact through its positive impact on innovation. In sum, there is as yet no clear consensus as to the impact of university-firm knowledge links on productivity.

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File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10943/176
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Paper provided by Scottish Institute for Research in Economics (SIRE) in its series SIRE Discussion Papers with number 2010-65.

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Date of creation: 2010
Handle: RePEc:edn:sirdps:176
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  1. Fosfuri, Andrea & Motta, Massimo, 1999. " Multinationals without Advantages," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 101(4), pages 617-630, December.
  2. Spyros Arvanitis & Nora Sydow & Martin Woerter, 2008. "Is there any Impact of University–Industry Knowledge Transfer on Innovation and Productivity? An Empirical Analysis Based on Swiss Firm Data," Review of Industrial Organization, Springer;The Industrial Organization Society, vol. 32(2), pages 77-94, March.
  3. Mansfield, Edwin, 1991. "Academic research and industrial innovation," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 20(1), pages 1-12, February.
  4. Marotta, Daniela & Mark, Michael & Blom, Andreas & Thorn, Kristian, 2007. "Human capital and university-industry linkages'role in fostering firm innovation : an empirical study of Chile and Colombia," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4443, The World Bank.
  5. James Love, 2003. "Technology sourcing versus technology exploitation: an analysis of US foreign direct investment flows," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 35(15), pages 1667-1678.
  6. Rajeev H. Dehejia & Sadek Wahba, 1998. "Propensity Score Matching Methods for Non-experimental Causal Studies," NBER Working Papers 6829, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Blundell, Richard & Costa Dias, Monica, 2008. "Alternative Approaches to Evaluation in Empirical Microeconomics," IZA Discussion Papers 3800, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  8. Richard Harris, 2005. "Economics Of The Workplace: Special Issue Editorial," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 52(3), pages 323-343, 07.
  9. Wolfgang Becker, 2003. "Evaluation of the Role of Universities in the Innovation Process," Discussion Paper Series 241, Universitaet Augsburg, Institute for Economics.
  10. Zhong Zhao, 2004. "Using Matching to Estimate Treatment Effects: Data Requirements, Matching Metrics, and Monte Carlo Evidence," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 86(1), pages 91-107, February.
  11. Giuseppe Medda & Claudio Piga & Donald S Siegel, 2005. "University R&D and Firm Productivity: Evidence from Italy," The Journal of Technology Transfer, Springer, vol. 30(2_2), pages 199-205, 01.
  12. Belderbos René & Carree Martin & Lokshin Boris, 2004. "Cooperative R&D and Firm Performance," Research Memorandum 022, Maastricht University, Maastricht Research School of Economics of Technology and Organization (METEOR).
  13. Nigel Driffield & James H Love, 2007. "Linking FDI motivation and host economy productivity effects: conceptual and empirical analysis," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan;Academy of International Business, vol. 38(3), pages 460-473, May.
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