European Collaboration in Research and Development

European Collaboration in Research and Development

Business Strategy and Public Policy

Edited by Yannis Caloghirou, Nicholas S. Vonortas and Stavros Ioannides

The contributions collected in this volume focus explicitly on cooperative R & D in Europe. The first part of the book offers empirical evidence on the extent, scope and direction of this collaboration and explores the motives and problems of the participating firms, as well as the perceived benefits they have enjoyed. The second part deals with the difficult policy issues that diverse national R & D regimes create for successful cooperative research and international convergence. The extensive survey results of European firms allow the authors to compare collaborative research policies in various EU countries and contrast the policy design that has emerged in the EU with that of the USA.

Chapter 12: Science and Technology Policy in Spain: 1980–2000

Pedro L. Marín and Georges Siotis

Subjects: economics and finance, industrial organisation, innovation and technology, innovation policy


1 Pedro L. Marín and Georges Siotis Spanish Science and Technology (S&T) policy was non-existent prior to 1977. The legislation adopted in that year was to form the embryo of the Spanish national system of innovation (NSI). The notion of NSI, popularized by Nelson and Winter (1982), describes the interaction between firms and research institutions (both private and public) that carry out research activities. The functioning of an NSI, then, refers to the mechanisms through which these entities interact to generate and/or distribute the economically valuable output of scientific research across the economic fabric. In that sense, a Spanish NSI did not exist prior to 1977, and it is only during the 1980s that a more comprehensive set of legislation was adopted with the objective of developing a coherent S&T policy. The OECD established the distinction between NSIs that are missionoriented and those that are diffusion-oriented. Spain clearly falls in the latter category. The stated objectives, as well quantitative results, indicate that efforts have been concentrated in fostering the adoption and diffusion of existing technology. Public policy has focused on fostering links between public research centres and private firms, the twin objective being to improve the technological base of Spanish enterprises and, at the same time, encourage public research entities to undertake economically valuable research. To that end, resources have been devoted to building the basic technology infrastructure, which would allow the Spanish NSI to take shape. Some initiatives have resulted in a...

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