Rosanna Tamburri. New CCA report confirms Canada underperforms on most measures of business R&D, but it found pockets of success.
An expert panel report examining business investment in research and development acknowledged that a “disconnect” exists between Canada’s strong publicly funded research and development activities at postsecondary institutions and the country’s comparatively weak investment in industrial R&D. But it cautioned against redistributing resources from the former to the latter.
The report was prepared at the request of Industry Canada by a panel of 14 experts assembled by the Council of Canadian Academies, a non-profit group, and released Aug. 28.
The report, The State of Industrial R&D in Canada, noted that compared to other industrialized nations, Canada performs similar amounts of publicly funded research and development but significantly less business R&D. In 2010, Canada ranked seventh among OECD countries when it came to R&D spending in higher education and twice the rate of the U.S. But in terms of business R&D, it ranked 20th, with half the rate of investment as countries such as Finland and Sweden.
“It is not that Canada performs more R&D in the public sector than comparator jurisdictions but that Canada performs less R&D in the business sector,” it said. This implies that Canada needs public policies to encourage investment in business R&D but not a redistribution of resources away from publicly funded research activities. More...