NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

R&D Investment and International Productivity Differences

Frank R. Lichtenberg

NBER Working Paper No. 4161 (Also Reprint No. r1813)
Issued in September 1992
NBER Program(s):   PR   EFG

This paper extends previous research on the effect of investment on labor productivity at the country level by accounting for investment in R&D, as well as for investment in fixed and human capital. Privately-funded R&D investment is found to have a significant positive effect on productivity. Moreover, this effect appears to be quite large. The estimated social (national) rate of return to private R&D investment is about seven times as large as the return to investment in equipment and structures. The elasticity of GNP with respect to the privately-funded research capital stock is about 7 %--about 1(3 as large as the physical-capital elasticity (whose estimate is substantially reduced when R&D is accounted for). These findings do not support the hypothesis that there arecomplete, or at least instantaneous, international R&D spillovers. The social marginal product of government-funded research capital appears to be much lower than that of private research capital.

download in pdf format
   (2760 K)

email paper

This paper is available as PDF (2760 K) or via email.

Machine-readable bibliographic record - MARC, RIS, BibTeX

Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w4161

Published: Economic Growth in the World Economy, Symposium 1992, edited by Horst Siebert, pp. 89-110.

Users who downloaded this paper also downloaded these:
Griliches Issues in Assessing the Contribution of Research and Development to Productivity Growth
Lichtenberg and Siegel w2901 The Impact of R&D Investment On Productivity - New Evidence Using Linked R&D-LRD Data
Griliches w1547 Productivity, R&d, and Basic Research at the Firm Level in the 1970s
Griliches w3768 The Search for R&D Spillovers
Griliches and Lichtenberg R&D and Productivity Growth at the Industry Level: Is There Still a Relationship?
 
Publications
Activities
Meetings
NBER Videos
Data
People
About

Support
National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA 02138; 617-868-3900; email: info@nber.org

Contact Us