NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

R&D Productivity: A Survey of Econometric Studies at the Firm Level

Jacques Mairesse, Mohamed Sassenou

NBER Working Paper No. 3666
Issued in March 1991
NBER Program(s):   PR

This paper surveys econometric studies investigating the relationship between R&D and productivity at the firm level and assesses the results obtained so far and some of the problems encountered. The findings reviewed fall naturally into three major categories: based on the cross-sectional or time-series dimensions of the data and specified in terms of the elasticity of R&D or the rate of return to R&D. In view of the problems involved in modeling the effects of R&D on productivity and in measuring the appropriate variables, it is an agreeable surprise that most studies have managed to produce statistically significant and frequently plausible estimates. However, many of the current studies are not fully comparable and their results still leave much to be desired. The task of achieving progress is an arduous one.

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Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w3666

Published:

  • Science-Technology-Industry Review (OECD-Paris), No. 8, pp. 9-43, April 1991.
  • "Recheche Developpement er Productivite: Un panorama des etudes econometrique sur daromees d'enterprises. En L'Evaluation Economique de la Rechercheet du Changement Technique, ed. J. De Bandt et D. Foray. Editions du CNRS Paris, 1991, pp. 61-96.

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