Title: Evaluation of public R&D policies: a cross-country comparison

Authors: Dirk Czarnitzki; Cindy Lopes Bento

Addresses: Department of Managerial Economics, Strategy and Innovation, Faculty of Business and Economics, K.U. Leuven, Naamsestraat 69, 3000 Leuven, Belgium; Department of Industrial Economics and International Management, ZEW – Centre for European Economic Research, P.O. Box 10 34 43, D-68034 Mannheim, Germany. ' Department of Managerial Economics, Strategy and Innovation, Faculty of Business and Economics, K.U. Leuven, Naamsestraat 69, 3000 Leuven, Belgium; Department of Industrial Economics and International Management, ZEW – Centre for European Economic Research, P.O. Box 10 34 43, D-68034 Mannheim, Germany; CEPS/INSTEAD, 3, avenue de la Fonte, L-4364 Esch-sur-Alzette, Luxembourg

Abstract: This study focuses on the effect of public funding on internal R&D investment and on total innovation intensity on a cross-country comparative level. Using harmonised micro data from five different countries, this study analyses the heterogeneity of the use of policy instruments. Applying a non-parametric matching method to identify the treatment effect, we find that on average firms would have invested significantly less if they would not have received subsidies. On similar grounds, our estimation also takes into account the 'treatment effects on the untreated'. This estimation enables us to assess whether or not governments could further foster R&D activities by extending innovation policies to currently not supported firms. With the exception of one country, all the governments of the sample would benefit from an extension of their subsidy policies. Finally, these two matching results can be combined in order to test for misallocation of public funds. Our analysis does not uncover any systematic misallocation of public funding for the countries under review.

Keywords: internal R&D investment; total innovation intensity; policy evaluation; treatment effects; cross-country comparison; R&D policy; public policy; public funding; research and development; research funding; innovation policy; fund allocation.

DOI: 10.1504/WRSTSD.2012.047690

World Review of Science, Technology and Sustainable Development, 2012 Vol.9 No.2/3/4, pp.254 - 282

Received: 08 May 2021
Accepted: 12 May 2021

Published online: 27 Jun 2012 *

Full-text access for editors Access for subscribers Purchase this article Comment on this article