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19.04.2017 • 18/2017
The state as a pioneering customer: How public demand can drive private innovation
Especially in technology-intensive industries, demand from the state can expand private markets and create incentives for privately funded research and development, a new study by the Halle Institute for Economic Research (IWH) – Member of the Leibniz Association shows.
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Asymmetric Investment Responses to Firm-specific Uncertainty
IWH Discussion Papers,
This paper analyzes how firm-specific uncertainty affects firms’ propensity to invest. We measure firm-specific uncertainty as firms’ absolute forecast errors derived from survey data of German manufacturing firms over 2007–2011. In line with the literature, our empirical findings reveal a negative impact of firm-specific uncertainty on investment. However, further results show that the investment response is asymmetric, depending on the size and direction of the forecast error. The investment propensity declines significantly if the realized situation is worse than expected. However, firms do not adjust their investment if the realized situation is better than expected, which suggests that the uncertainty effect counteracts the positive effect due to unexpectedly favorable business conditions. This can be one explanation behind the phenomenon of slow recovery in the aftermath of financial crises. Additional results show that the forecast error is highly concurrent with an ex-ante measure of firm-specific uncertainty we obtain from the survey data. Furthermore, the effect of firm-specific uncertainty is enforced for firms that face a tighter financing situation.
Agglomeration and FDI in East German Knowledge-intensive Business Services
The focus of this article is the empirical identification of factors influencing Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in the knowledge-intensive business service (KIBS) sector on the regional level of «Raumordnungsregionen» in East Germany. The analysis focuses on the impact of regional agglomeration and technological capability on the location decision of foreign investors and West German MNEs. It shows that localisation, patent activity and the share of employees with an R&D occupation affect significantly the location decision of FDI. This result provides an explanation for the strong concentration of KIBS in urban areas in a post-transition economy.