OECD Science, Technology and Industry Working Papers

The OECD Directorate for Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) leads OECD research on the contribution of science, technology and industry to well-being and economic growth. STI Working Papers cover a broad range of topics including definition and measurement of science and technology indicators, global value chains, and research on policies to promote innovation. These technical or analytical working papers are prepared by staff or outside consultants to share early insights and elicit feedback.


Measuring R&D in the Services

The aim of this paper is to identify the main problems of comparison between countries and over time of the data on R&D performed in the services industries collected by Member countries and reported to OECD, given the recent rapid growth in their share of total R&D expenditures in the business enterprise sector.

The degree to which national R&D surveys cover the service industries varies considerably. Some have made substantial efforts to extend this coverage recently in response both to national policy needs and to the implementation the revised OECD R&D questionnaire, notably concerning the computer services industry/software R&D. The coverage and classification of special R&D institutes continues to vary between countries. The coverage and quality of the data is clearly improving but considerable further progress will be needed before the R&D statistics for service industries can be used for integrated economic studies.

Despite these variations in coverage, the data already ...


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