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Productivity Gains from R&D Investment: Are High-Tech Sectors Still Ahead?

  • Ortega-Argilés, Raquel

    ()

    (IN+ Center for Innovation)

  • Piva, Mariacristina

    ()

    (Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore)

  • Vivarelli, Marco

    ()

    (Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore)

The purpose of this study is to investigate the relationship between a firm's R&D expenditures considered as an investment in knowledge, and its productivity, looking at sectoral peculiarities which may emerge; to this end, we use a large unique longitudinal database consisting of 1,809 US and European manufacturing and service firms over the period 1990-2008, for a total of 16,079 observations. Our main findings can be summarised as follows: knowledge stock has a significant positive impact on a firm's productivity, with an overall elasticity of about 0.10; this general result is largely consistent with findings presented in previous literature in terms of the sign, the significance and the estimated magnitude of the relevant coefficient. More interestingly, the coefficient turns out to be significantly larger in the service and high-tech sectors than in the non-high-tech manufacturing sectors. These outcomes suggest that firms in high-tech sectors are still ahead in terms of the impact on productivity of their R&D investments; moreover, a shift in favour of the service sectors seems to emerge.

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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 5975.

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Length: 24 pages
Date of creation: Sep 2011
Date of revision:
Publication status: published in: Economics of Innovation and New Technology, 2014, [Online First]
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp5975
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  1. Zvi Griliches, 1998. "Issues in Assessing the Contribution of Research and Development to Productivity Growth," NBER Chapters, in: R&D and Productivity: The Econometric Evidence, pages 17-45 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Aghion, Philippe & Howitt, Peter, 1996. "The Observational Implications of Schumpeterian Growth Theory," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 21(1), pages 13-25.
  3. Bogliacino, Francesco & Pianta, Mario, 2011. "Engines of growth. Innovation and productivity in industry groups," Structural Change and Economic Dynamics, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 41-53, February.
  4. Lööf, Hans & Heshmati, Almas, 2001. "On the Relationship between Innovation and Performance: A sensitivity Analysis," SSE/EFI Working Paper Series in Economics and Finance 0446, Stockholm School of Economics, revised 01 Oct 2001.
  5. Mark Rogers, 2006. "R&D and Productivity in the UK: evidence from firm-level data in the 1990s," Economics Series Working Papers 255, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
  6. Jacques Mairesse & Pierre Mohnen, 2004. "The Importance of R&D for Innovation: A Reassessment Using French Survey Data," NBER Working Papers 10897, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Philippe Cuneo & Jacques Mairesse, 1984. "Productivity and R&D at the Firm Level in French Manufacturing," NBER Chapters, in: R&D, Patents, and Productivity, pages 375-392 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Maria Laura Parisi & Fabio Schiantarelli & Alessandro Sembenelli, 2002. "Productivity, Innovation Creation and Absorption, and R&D: Micro Evidence for Italy," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 526, Boston College Department of Economics.
  9. Peters, Bettina & Lööf, Hans & Janz, Norbert, 2003. "Firm Level Innovation and Productivity: Is there a Common Story Across Countries?," ZEW Discussion Papers 03-26, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
  10. Lichtenberg, Frank R & Siegel, Donald, 1991. "The Impact of R&D Investment on Productivity--New Evidence Using Linked R&D-LRD Data," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 29(2), pages 203-29, April.
  11. Conte, Andrea & Vivarelli, Marco, 2005. "One or Many Knowledge Production Functions? Mapping Innovative Activity Using Microdata," IZA Discussion Papers 1878, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  12. Agustí Segarra & Mercedes Teruel, 2011. "Productivity and R&D sources: evidence for Catalan firms," Economics of Innovation and New Technology, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 20(8), pages 727-748, September.
  13. Greenhalgh, C & Longland, M & Bosworth, D, 2001. "Technological Activity and Employment in a Panel of UK Firms," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 48(3), pages 260-82, August.
  14. Bronwyn H. Hall, 2007. "Measuring the Returns to R&D: The Depreciation Problem," NBER Working Papers 13473, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Bruno Crépon & Emmanuel Duguet & Jacques Mairesse, 1998. "Research, Innovation and Productivity : An Econometric Analysis at the Firm Level," Working Papers 98-33, Centre de Recherche en Economie et Statistique.
  16. Raquel Ortega-Argilés & Mariacristina Piva & Lesley Potters & Marco Vivarelli, 2010. "Is Corporate R&D Investment In High-Tech Sectors More Effective?," Contemporary Economic Policy, Western Economic Association International, vol. 28(3), pages 353-365, 07.
  17. Sirilli, Giorgio & Evangelista, Rinaldo, 1998. "Technological innovation in services and manufacturing: results from Italian surveys," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 27(9), pages 881-899, December.
  18. Agusti Segarra-Blasco, 2010. "Innovation and productivity in manufacturing and service firms in Catalonia: a regional approach," Economics of Innovation and New Technology, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 19(3), pages 233-258.
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  23. Crepon, B. & Duguet, E. & Mairesse, J., 1998. "Research Investment, Innovation and Productivity: An Econometric Analysis at the Firm Level," Papiers d'Economie Mathématique et Applications 98.15, Université Panthéon-Sorbonne (Paris 1).
  24. repec:fth:inseep:9833 is not listed on IDEAS
  25. Kuen-Hung Tsai & Jiann-Chyuan Wang, 2004. "R&D Productivity and the Spillover Effects of High-tech Industry on the Traditional Manufacturing Sector: The Case of Taiwan," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 27(10), pages 1555-1570, November.
  26. Jacques Mairesse & Pierre Mohnen, 2001. "To Be or Not To Be Innovative: An Exercise in Measurement," NBER Working Papers 8644, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  27. White, Halbert, 1980. "A Heteroskedasticity-Consistent Covariance Matrix Estimator and a Direct Test for Heteroskedasticity," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 48(4), pages 817-38, May.
  28. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521198875 is not listed on IDEAS
  29. Winter, Sidney G., 1984. "Schumpeterian competition in alternative technological regimes," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 5(3-4), pages 287-320.
  30. Thomas Hatzichronoglou, 1997. "Revision of the High-Technology Sector and Product Classification," OECD Science, Technology and Industry Working Papers 1997/2, OECD Publishing.
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