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The effect of research and development personnel on innovation activities of firms: Evidence from small and medium-sized enterprises from the Visegrad Group countries



Objective: This study aims to assess whether research and development (R&D) personnel from firms, the research system, and governmental institutions contribute to innovation activities of firms from the Visegrad Group countries.

Research Design & Methods: Fixed effects panel regression with robust standard errors was used for hypothesis testing over the period 2009-2017. The data for the study was extracted from Eurostat, the European Innovation Scoreboard and the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development with a particular focus on R&D personnel from firms, the research system, and governmental institutions. The empirical analysis was focused on small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

Findings: The results provide evidence about significant linkage between R&D personnel from governmental institutions and innovation activities of firms from the Visegrad Group countries. The research also highlights the lack of a significant effect of R&D personnel from firms and the research system on firms’ innovation activities in the analysed former Soviet satellite economies distinguished by innovation performance below the average for the European Union.

Implications & Recommendations: Policy and practical implications that should be indicated include the necessity to further develop knowledge cooperation between governmental institutions and firms in order to reinforce innovation processes. There is also a need to enhance cooperation between the research system and firms to support SMEs from the Visegrad Group countries with highly-skilled human resources.

Contribution & Value Added: This article adds to the literature on drivers and sources of firms’ innovation activities by providing new empirical evidence on the effect of R&D personnel on innovation activities of firms from the Visegrad Group countries, which are former Soviet satellite economies with a moderate level of innovativeness and belong to peripheral countries in the European Union.



R&D personnel, innovation activities of firms, the Visegrad Group countries

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