I contributi dello Stato all'attività di ricerca e sviluppo delle imprese
[Public grants for the firms' R&D activities]
In the Lisbon strategy, Member States committed to making structural reforms to their economies. Within this context, the European Council called for R&D investment to approach 3% of GDP by 2010, of which 2% should come from private sector. At the moment, in Italy R&D investment represents 1,2% of GDP, of which about 50% comes from the private sector. In Italy, public support to the private R&D's activities is basically built on fundings' allocation from the public sector to the private firms. The two main funds to this purpose are the FAR (fondo per le Agevolazioni alla Ricerca) and the FIT (Fondo per l'Innovazione Tecnologica). The aim of this paper is to analyze teh italian institutional and economic framework of the public incentives to the private R&D activity. Forst of all, the institutional framework is depicted (beneficiaries, typological classification of public fundings, allocation's rules). Using data from the Ministry of Productive Activities, the Italian Association for the Industrial Research and the national Accounts Department, the trend of the fundings allocations is the time span 1985-2002 is depicted. The analysis in terms of demand and supply of funds shows a relevant excess of the demand and a greater flow of resources towards big enterprises. The sector-based distribution of funding is analyzed calculating an index of funding concentration. While the FIT presents a quite uniform distribution (except for transports and communications), the FAR is characterized by a greater sector-based concentration.Finally, the analysis of the effects of public spending on the private R&D expenditure shows that further support more incentive-based is needed such as, for example, tax credit.
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