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R&D and productivity in corporate groups: an empirical investigation using a panel of French firms

Author

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  • Pierre Blanchard

    (ERUDITE - Equipe de Recherche sur l’Utilisation des Données Individuelles en lien avec la Théorie Economique - UPEM - Université Paris-Est Marne-la-Vallée - UPEC UP12 - Université Paris-Est Créteil Val-de-Marne - Paris 12)

  • Jean-Pierre Huiban
  • Patrick Sevestre

    (EUREQUA - Equipe Universitaire de Recherche en Economie Quantitative - UP1 - Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)

Abstract

Using a panel of more than 3,100 French corporate groups' affiliates and parent companies, we estimate a production function model where we enable the productivity of a firm to depend on the knowledge produced by the R&D activities of the other companies in the group. We find indeed that a firm's productivity may significantly be enhanced thanks to the R&D capital of the other affiliates. This enhancement can be estimated to be, for the corporate group as a whole, between 30% and 40% of the "usual" estimate of the direct impact of firms' R&D expenses on their own productivity. However, this effect differs depending on whether the firm itself conducts some R&D or not. In case it does, the other affiliates' R&D does not appear to impact significantly on its own performances: those depend only on its proper R&D activity. At the opposite, the other affiliates' R&D has a very significant effect on the productivity of firms which do not conduct any R&D. These results emphasize the existence of group spillovers, which differ from the usual industry or geographical spillovers. In particular, they do not seem to require an "R&D based absorptive capacity" to pre-exist and they are clearly the result of an explicit strategy, defined at the group level. Finally, these results might lead to revise upwards our estimates of the private returns on R&D investments.
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Suggested Citation

  • Pierre Blanchard & Jean-Pierre Huiban & Patrick Sevestre, 2005. "R&D and productivity in corporate groups: an empirical investigation using a panel of French firms," Université Paris1 Panthéon-Sorbonne (Post-Print and Working Papers) halshs-00279983, HAL.
  • Handle: RePEc:hal:cesptp:halshs-00279983
    Note: View the original document on HAL open archive server: https://halshs.archives-ouvertes.fr/halshs-00279983
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    Cited by:

    1. Ugur, Mehmet & Trushin, Eshref & Solomon, Edna & Guidi, Francesco, 2016. "R&D and productivity in OECD firms and industries: A hierarchical meta-regression analysis," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 45(10), pages 2069-2086.
    2. Liza Jabbour & Maria Pluvia Zuniga, 2009. "Drivers of the Offshore Outsourcing of R&D: Empirical Evidence from French Manufacturers," Discussion Papers 09/04, University of Nottingham, GEP.
    3. Carl Gaigné & Bertrand Schmitt & Patrick Sevestre & Michel Simioni, 2016. "Editorial to the special issue in memory of Jean-Pierre Huiban," Review of Agricultural, Food and Environmental Studies, Springer, vol. 97(2), pages 85-87, September.
    4. Enrico Guzzini & Donato Iacobucci, 2014. "Ownership as R&D incentive in business groups," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 43(1), pages 119-135, June.
    5. Ghosh, Saibal, 2016. "Banker on board and innovative activity," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 69(10), pages 4205-4214.
    6. H. Ben Hassine & F. Boudier & C. Mathieu, 2017. "The two ways of FDI R&D spillovers: evidence from the French manufacturing industry," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 49(25), pages 2395-2408, May.
    7. Enrico Guzzini & Donato Iacobucci, 2012. "Business group affiliation and R&D propensity," Working Papers 1203, c.MET-05 - Centro Interuniversitario di Economia Applicata alle Politiche per L'industria, lo Sviluppo locale e l'Internazionalizzazione.
    8. Enrico Guzzini & Donato Iacobucci, 2012. "The role of ownership as R&D incentive in business groups," Working Papers 1205, c.MET-05 - Centro Interuniversitario di Economia Applicata alle Politiche per L'industria, lo Sviluppo locale e l'Internazionalizzazione.
    9. Ding, Ding, 2015. "Leaning from multinational companies through hiring: An empirical investigation," Working Paper Series in Economics and Institutions of Innovation 402, Royal Institute of Technology, CESIS - Centre of Excellence for Science and Innovation Studies.

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