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Policy-driven regional development? The relationship between R&D funding and innovation in the bioeconomy

Authors: Leonard Prochaska*, University of Greifswald, Daniel Schiller, University of Greifswald
Topics: Economic Geography, Regional Geography, Quantitative Methods
Keywords: R&D subsidies, Regional innovation, Bioeconomy
Session Type: Paper
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For over 20 years, innovation policy has been based on the concept of regional innovation systems and implemented strategies according to this model. While studies at the microeconomic level have been able to establish the added value of R&D subsidies, empirical studies on the actual influence on regional innovation performance are still rare and do not provide a uniform view.
The difficulty of measuring public funding on an aggregated level is, amongst others, explained by the complexity of dynamic economic systems in which innovation policy is only one of several decisive determinants. In addition, data availability is often limited and poses challenges for scientific analysis.
Against this backdrop, it is the aim of this paper to analyse the relationship between R&D funding and innovation at the regional level for Germany by using the example of bioeconomy promotion and its effects on regions and industries. The bioeconomy concept aims at the ‘biologisation’ of industries that rely on fossil raw materials. It emerged from the development of modern biotechnology and hence offers a suitable opportunity to analyse the influence of innovation policy on regional development.
For this purpose, we will use both the German subsidy database (Foerderkatalog) and the PATSTAT database to identify R&D projects and patents related to the bioeconomy via text mining methods.
Based on the spatial associations between R&D funding and patents, we will provide insights into the role of public R&D funding for bioeconomy innovation at the regional level.

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