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Mapping the two faces of R&D: productivity growth in a panel of OECD industries

Griffith, R.; Redding, S.; van Reenen, J.; (2000) Mapping the two faces of R&D: productivity growth in a panel of OECD industries. (IFS Working Papers W00/02). Institute for Fiscal Studies: London, UK. Green open access

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Abstract

Many writers have claimed that research and development (R&D) has two ‘faces’. In addition to the conventional role of stimulating innovation, R&D enhances technology transfer by improving the ability of firms to learn about advances in the leading edge (‘absorptive capacity’). In this paper we explore this idea empirically using a panel of industries across twelve OECD countries. We find evidence that R&D is statistically and economically important in this catch up process as well as stimulating innovation directly. Human capital also plays an major role in productivity growth, but we only find a small impact of trade. Because R&D matters so much for growth through catchup, social rates of return have been underestimated by studies that focus only on the U.S.

Type: Working / discussion paper
Title: Mapping the two faces of R&D: productivity growth in a panel of OECD industries
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1920/wp.ifs.2000.0002
Language: English
Keywords: JEL classification: O0, O3, O4. R&D, human capital, total factor productivity, convergence
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of SandHS > Dept of Economics
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/4074
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