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Unleashing Business Innovation in Canada

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  • Alexandra Bibbee

    (OECD)

Abstract

This paper discusses how to improve Canada’s business innovation in order to boost labour productivity and output growth. Many general framework conditions are highly favourable to business risk-taking and innovation, including macro stability, openness, strong human capital, low corporate tax rates, low barriers to firm entry and flexible labour markets. However, they can be improved further by reduced external and interprovincial barriers in network and professional service sectors, more efficient capital markets, fewer capital tax distortions and improved patent protection. A second focus should be on ensuring that incentives arising from government subsidies are targeted on actual market failures. The very high level of support to business R&D via the federal Scientific Research and Experimental Development (SR&ED) tax credit and provincial top-ups may affect the incentives of small firms to grow and should be redesigned. A plethora of small, fragmented granting programmes, mainly geared to SMEs, should be streamlined for better government-business collaboration. The large public share in venture capital should be wound down, as it may crowd out more productive private finance. A final focus should be on boosting manager and worker skills that are intrinsic to all forms of innovation, by filling gaps in training, mentoring and education. This Working Paper relates to the 2012 OECD Economic Review of Canada (www.oecd.org/eco/surveys/Canada). Libérer l'innovation des entreprises au Canada Cette étude se penche sur la manière de renforcer l’innovation dans les entreprises canadiennes afin de stimuler la productivité de la main-d’oeuvre et la croissance de la production. De nombreuses conditions-cadres canadiennes sont très propices à la prise de risques et à l’innovation dans les entreprises : stabilité macroéconomique, ouverture sur l’extérieur, solidité du capital humain, faible imposition des bénéfices des sociétés, rareté des obstacles à l’entrée des entreprises sur le marché, flexibilité des marchés du travail. Ces conditions-cadres peuvent toutefois s’améliorer encore grâce à une diminution des barrières extérieures et interprovinciales dans les secteurs des réseaux et des services professionnels, à une plus grande efficience des marchés financiers, à de moindres distorsions de l’imposition du capital et à une meilleure protection des brevets. Un deuxième axe pourrait consister à s’assurer que les incitations découlant des subventions de la puissance publique ciblent bien les carences effectives du marché. Il se peut que le très fort soutien à la R-D des entreprises représenté par le crédit d’impôt fédéral pour la RS&DE (recherche scientifique et développement expérimental) et par ses compléments provinciaux entame le désir de croissance des petites entreprises ; peut-être donc faudrait-il redessiner ces aides. La kyrielle de petits programmes fragmentaires de subventionnement visant principalement les PME devrait être rationalisée pour améliorer la coopération entre le milieu universitaire et le monde de l’entreprise. Il faudrait réduire la trop grande place des fonds publics dans le capital-risque, car il se peut qu’elle évince des financements privés plus productifs. Un dernier axe devrait, par des actions cherchant à combler les lacunes de formation, de tutorat et d’enseignement, privilégier la stimulation des compétences de l’encadrement et du personnel qui s’appliquent à toutes les formes d’innovation. Ce Document de travail se rapporte à l’Étude économique de l’OCDE du Canada 2012 (www.oecd.org/eco/etudes/Canada).

Suggested Citation

  • Alexandra Bibbee, 2012. "Unleashing Business Innovation in Canada," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 997, OECD Publishing.
  • Handle: RePEc:oec:ecoaaa:997-en
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    File URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1787/5k912j63dn25-en
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    Keywords

    academic research grants; angel investing; biens immatériels; bons; brevets; business taxes; capital-risque; competition; concurrence; crédits d’impôt pour la R-D; droits de propriété intellectuelle; entrepreneuriat; entrepreneurship; impôt sur les sociétés; innovation; innovation; intangibles; intellectual property rights; multifactor productivity; patents; productivity; productivité; productivité multifactorielle; R&D tax credits; recherche et développement; research and development; subsidies; subvention; subventions pour la recherche universitaire; technology transfer; transfert de technologie; tutorat-investissement; venture capital; vouchers;

    JEL classification:

    • H25 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Business Taxes and Subsidies
    • I23 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Higher Education; Research Institutions
    • 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
    • O34 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Intellectual Property and Intellectual Capital
    • O38 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Government Policy

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