University-industry scientific production and the Great Recession

Joaquín M. Azagra-Caro, Robert J.W. Tijssen, Elena M. Tur, Alfredo Yegros-Yegros
Technological Forecasting & Social Change

R&D spending, be it university or industrial spending, has a positive impact on the scale of scientific production.

However, the impact of R&D spending on joint university-industry scientific production, which may vary sig-

nificantly according to the phase of macroeconomic cycles, is likely to be more complex than the impact on

either within-university or within-industry production. We test this assumption in the context of the OECD

countries and other economies against the backdrop of the Great Recession (2007-2013). Industry R&D spending

dominated university-industry scientific production, but the crisis changed the impact of that spending source,

which was negative during the previous expansion and became positive during the subsequent stagnation. The

Great Recession had an absolute negative impact on university-industry scientific production, but also a mod-

erating positive impact on industry R&D spending, to the extent that the few countries where this spending

increased faster during the Great Recession saw university-industry scientific production rise. Positive effects

were more pronounced with regards to 'domestic' university-industry scientific production, where collaborating

universities and business companies were located in the same country.