Working Paper No. 553

Does FDI Work as a Channel for R&D Spillovers? Evidence Based on Swedish Data

Published: April 24, 2001Pages: 29Keywords: Multinational Enterprises; Foreign Direct Investment; Spillovers; Research and DevelopmentJEL-codes: F23; O32; O33

Does FDI Work as a Channel for R&D Spillovers? Evidence Based on Swedish Data Henrik Braconier, Karolina Ekholm and Karen Helene Midelfart Knarvik


Multinational enterprises (MNEs) are important in transmitting technology across national borders. Not only do they allow for transfer of technology within the firm, but it is also believed that they are important channels for international R&D spillovers as well. This paper analyzes empirically whether inward and outward foreign direct investment (FDI) work as channels for international R&D spillovers. We utilize firm-level as well as industry-level data for Swedish manufacturing in the analysis. We find no evidence of FDI-related R&D spillovers - neither at the firm-level nor at the industry-level in Swedish manufacturing. The only variable that consistently affects total factor productivity is own investment in R&D.

Interdisciplinary European Studies

The European Union and the Return of the Nation State

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This book explores the complex and ever-changing relationship between the European Union and its member states. The recent surge in tension in this relationship has been prompted by the actions of some member state governments as they question fundamental EU values and principles and refuse to implement common decisions seemingly on the basis of narrowly defined national interests.

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