Technological activities of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) have received considerable attention from researchers and policy makers since the mid-1980s. Small firms could nurture entrepreneurship and facilitate the creation and application of new ideas. In spite of their potential in generating innovations, it is also observed that SMEs shy away from formal R&D activities, and the firm size itself seems to be a barrier for R&D activities. SMEs operating in developing countries face extra hurdles to investing in R&D. Given the massive share of SMEs, it becomes crucial to realize their developmental potential in developing countries. In this paper, we study the drivers of R&D activities in SMEs in Turkish manufacturing industries by using panel data at the establishment level for the 1993–2001 period. Our findings suggest that SMEs are less likely to conduct R&D, but if they overcome the first obstacle of conducting R&D, they spend proportionally more on R&D than the LSEs do. R&D intensity is higher in small than in large firms. Moreover, public R&D encourages firms to intensify their R&D efforts. The impact of R&D support is stronger for small firms.
Small Business Economics – Springer Journals
Published: Mar 24, 2009
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