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Innovation for economic performance: The case of Latin American firms

  • Arias Ortiz, Elena


    (Education Division, Inter-American Development Bank)

  • Crespi, Gustavo


    (Competitiveness and Innovation Division, Inter-American Development Bank)

  • Tacsir, Ezequiel


    (UNU-MERIT / MGSoG, and Competitiveness and Innovation Division, Inter-American Development Bank)

  • Vargas, Fernando


    (Competitiveness and Innovation Division, Inter-American Development Bank)

  • Zuniga, Pluvia



In this paper, a wide range of innovation indicators are analysed in order to describe the innovation behaviour of manufacturing firms in LAC using the recently released Enterprise Surveys 2010. The Enterprise Surveys define innovation rates as the share of firms introducing product and process innovations. The survey also measures the proportion of firms investing in research and development (R&D) and filing for intellectual property rights (IPRs). The aim of this note is to understand the main characteristics of innovative firms and to gather new evidence with regard to the nature of the innovation process in the region. Statistics about the performance of LAC firms are provided using different types of indicators to measure firms' innovative behaviour. In particular, differences in innovation performance and effort by country, sector, and key firm characteristics, such as being a multinational or exporter, are explored. Those firms in LAC that are top R&D performers are identified, and the analysis closes with an exploration of firm characteristics that strongly correlate with the probability of being a top R&D performer in the region.

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Paper provided by United Nations University - Maastricht Economic and Social Research Institute on Innovation and Technology (MERIT) in its series MERIT Working Papers with number 028.

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Date of creation: 2013
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:unm:unumer:2013028
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