Measuring R&D: Challenges Faced by Developing Countries
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Measuring R&D: Challenges Faced by Developing Countries. South Asian Regional Workshop on Science, Technology and Innovation Statistics Kathmandu, Nepal 6-9 December 2010. Outline. The problem The process Contents of the Technical Guide Thinking ahead.
Measuring R&D: Challenges Faced by Developing Countries

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Slide 1

Measuring R&D: Challenges Faced by Developing Countries

South Asian Regional Workshop on Science, Technology and Innovation Statistics

Kathmandu, Nepal6-9 December 2010

Slide 2

Outline

  • The problem

  • The process

  • Contents of the Technical Guide

  • Thinking ahead

Slide 3

R&D statistics in developing countries (1)

  • Recognition, meeting targets, evidence-based S&T policy, but:

    • lack of interest at the level of policy makers (low policy-relevance?)

    • S&T is still not properly represented in economic/social public policies. lack of resources devoted to statistics in S&T

    • lack of technical knowledge for the production of cross-nationally comparable R&D statistics

    • weak statistical institutions

    • difficulties in applying FM concepts and methods

Slide 4

R&D statistics in developing countries (2)

  • Particular characteristics of R&D activities to be taken into account:

    • R&D performers function within the specific context of a national, cultural, political, financial and economic system

    • different structures in terms of government, innovation system, higher education system, statistical system

    • particular ‘culture of information’

    • Users of R&D stat: Gov, analysts. + international donor agencies

  • S&T indicators

    • adapted to particular policy needs

    • provide answers to actual policy questions

  • However, international comparability is foremost

Slide 5

The process

  • Process started in 2007

  • Lead papers by consultants

  • Meetings in 2007 and 2009

  • Experience acquired through the UIS work

  • Proposal for an annex to the Frascati Manual at the OECD 2008 and 2009 NESTI meetings; accepted at 2010 meeting

  • Technical Guide released in English

    • Translations in Spanish and French almost finished

Slide 6

Products

NEW Annex proposed

Slide 7

Contents of the Technical Guide

  • Introduction

  • The nature of R&D activity in developing countries

  • R&D expenditure

  • Internal and international mobility of the R&D workforce

  • Specific fields of R&D activity

  • Foreign and internationally controlled entities

  • Strengthening R&D statistical systems

  • Thinking ahead

Slide 8

Chapter 2: The nature of R&D activity in developing countries

  • The growing importance of R&D

    • More ‘R’ than ‘D’ in developing countries.

    • Strong presence of the government and higher education sectors in the performance of R&D. Lower emphasis on R&D in business sector.

    • Occasional R&D / Informal R&D

    • Special types of R&D

Slide 9

Chapter 2: The nature of R&D activity in developing countries cont…

  • Heterogeneity and concentration

    • Developing countries are a heterogeneous group:

      • Group A: countries with consolidated R&D systems and developed S&T statistics systems  no major difficulties in applying Frascati Manual concepts.

      • Group B: countries with consolidated R&D systems and less developed S&T statistics systems  need specific guidance on how to establish and consolidate sound R&D statistics systems.

      • Group C: countries with incipient R&D systems  need specific guidelines on how to start creating a regular R&D statistical collection.

    • High degree of concentration (in group of countries, in particular institutions, in major projects, etc)  lead to volatility and inconsistencies in statistics.

Slide 10

Chapter 3: R&D expenditure

  • Use of secondary data from national budget

  • New sources of funds emerging

  • Discrepancy between voted and allocated budget

  • Budgetary commitments are not followed up

  • Mixing of budgetary records and annual reports from performing units

  • Definition of S&T / R&D budgets

  • Identifying R&D components in the national budget

  • State-owned enterprises, university-owned companies and national scientific academies

  • Private universities

  • Fiscal year vs. calendar year

  • Information systems in government and higher education inadequate for statistics

Slide 11

Chapter 4: Internal and international mobility of the R&D workforce

Underestimation of researchers

  • Unpaid research

  • Informal research

  • Research outside of the normal work setting with external funding

  • Multiple part time positions not taken into account or undercounted

  • Master’s research

Slide 12

Counting researchers

Overestimation of researchers

  • Counting the contract instead of the real effort

  • Multiple full-time research positions

Slide 13

Counting researchers

Special cases

  • FTE calculation >1 and FTE>HC

  • R&D in times of crisis

  • Visiting researchers

  • Brain circulation

Slide 14

Counting researchers

Recommendations

  • Peer interviews of researchers

  • Include a module on barriers

  • Use secondary sources

    • Publication databases, both national and international

    • STMIS and other databases of researchers

    • Databases and registers of clinical trials

    • Databases and registers of the main foreign donors involved in funding R&D in the countries

    • University accreditation databases

Slide 15

Chapter 5: Specific fields of R&D activity

  • Traditional knowledge

  • Clinical trials

  • Industrial activities

  • Other activities

Slide 16

Special types of R&D - Traditional knowledge

Traditional knowledge (TK)

A cumulative body of knowledge, know-how, practices and representations maintained and developed by peoples with extended histories of interaction with the natural environment.

These sophisticated sets of understandings, interpretations and meanings are part and parcel of a cultural complex that encompasses language, naming and classification systems, resource use practices, ritual, spirituality and worldview.

Slide 17

Special types of R&D - Traditional knowledge

Dichotomy between traditional and scientific knowledge systems

  • substantive grounds – because of differences in the subject matter and characteristics of traditional and scientific knowledge

  • methodological and epistemological grounds – because the two forms of knowledge employ different methods to investigate reality

  • contextual grounds – because traditional knowledge is more deeply rooted in its environment

Slide 18

Special types of R&D - Traditional knowledge

Links between traditional and scientific knowledge systems

  • Scientific approach to TK (in ethno-botany, ethno-pedology, ethno-forestry, ethno-veterinary medicine, ethno-ecology, etc).

  • The application of scientific methods to TK, converting it into a source of scientific information. (in biodiversity science or nature conservation; traditional health and pharmacopeia).

  • Interaction between scientists and communities in participatory technology development

Slide 19

Special types of R&D - Traditional knowledge

Measurement issues and recommendations

  • Establish the boundaries for TK (what qualify as R&D)

  • The activities establishing an interface between traditional knowledge and R&D

  • Some fields of activities in TK are trans-disciplinary (e.g. ethno-botany), making them extremely difficult to map into the current classification’s structure.

Slide 20

Special types of R&D - Clinical trials

Clinical trials

  • (Can) involve a significant amount of R&D

  • Need to be conducted on a wide population

  • Growth area for developing countries

Slide 21

Special types of R&D - Clinical trials

Measurement of clinical trials

  • Registers of clinical trials available, e.g. WHO but also national

  • Funding often from abroad

  • Performance various possibilities

    • a local branch of the foreign main sponsor

    • universities and university hospitals

    • individual researchers

    • local medical clinics

    • locally registered PNPs

    • international PNPs

Slide 22

Special types of R&D - Clinical trials

Measurement issues and recommendations

  • Occupation category of local staff

    • Medical doctors and other professionals with at least ISCED 5A degrees should be considered as researchers

    • Nurses and other staff with qualifications below ISCED 5A should be accounted for as technicians

  • FTE calculation is important (often part-time)

  • Attribution of sector of performance must be done with care to avoid double counting

Slide 23

Special types of R&D - Industrial activities

  • Reverse engineering: understanding the structure and functioning of an object (in order to make a new device or program creates a similar object in a different way), copying it, or improving it.

  • Recommendation: If reverse engineering is carried out in the framework of an R&D project to develop a new (and different) product, it should be considered as R&D.

Slide 24

Special types of R&D - Other activities

  • Community development and other social projects

    • R&D only in development and testing phase  experimental development (most probably in the field of social sciences)

  • Religious research

    • part of humanities,

    • should be included in R&D surveys.

       This (religious research) will not be a recommendation

Slide 25

Chapter 6: Foreign and internationally controlled entities

  • Foreign antennas

  • Foreign company’s R&D labs

  • International organizations operating in the country

  • Foreign universities based and conducting R&D in campuses set up in the country

Slide 26

The foreign institutions sector

Recommendation

  • Create a “foreign institutions” (FI) sector as a separate sector of performance

  • Funding flowing from this sector to other sectors should be considered from “Abroad” as stated in the main body of the Frascati Manual

    What is included?

  • Foreign antennas

  • International organizations

  • Foreign company’s R&D labs  (remains in the business sector)

  • Foreign universities  (remains in the HE sector)

Slide 27

The foreign institutions sector

The principal sector sub-classification

  • Business enterprises

  • Government

  • Higher Education

  • Private non-profit

  • International organizations

Slide 28

Chapter 7: Strategies for setting up S&T statistics systems in developing countries

  • Will be discussed in session 8.

Slide 29

Chapter 8: Thinking ahead: Other products – beyond R&D

  • Redefine the concepts of scientific and technological education and training at broadly the third level (STET), Scientific and technological services (STS) and S&T activities (STA)

  • Better integrate education statistics with R&D statistics

  • Hands on guidance

  • Metadata

  • Model questionnaire

Slide 30

Thank you!

http://www.uis.unesco.org

m.schaaper@uis.unesco.org


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