Exploring innovation creation across rural and urban firms: Analysis of the National Survey of Business Competitiveness


August 1, 2018 - Author: Giri Aryal, John Mann, Scott Loveridge and Satish Joshi

Purpose: The innovation creation literature primarily focuses on urban firms/regions or relies heavily on these data; less studied are rural firms and areas in this regard. The purpose of this paper is to employ a new firm-level data set, national in scale, and analyze characteristics that potentially influence innovation creation across rural and urban firms. Design/methodology/approach: The authors use the 2014 National Survey of Business Competitiveness (NSBC) covering multiple firm-level variables related to innovation creation combined with secondary data reflecting the regional business and innovative environments where these firms operate. The number of patent applications filed by these firms measures their innovation creation, and the paper employs a negative binomial regression estimation for analysis. Findings: After controlling for industry, county and state factors, rural and urban firms differ in their innovation creation characteristics and behaviors, suggesting that urban firms capitalize on their resources better than rural firms. Other major findings of the paper provide evidence that: first, for rural firms, the influence of university R&D is relevant to innovation creation, but their perception of university-provided information is not significant; and second, rural firms that are willing to try, but fail, in terms of innovation creation have a slight advantage over other rural firms less willing to take on the risk. Originality/value: This paper is one of the first to analyze the 2014 NSBC, a firm-level national survey covering a wide range of innovation-related variables. The authors combine it with other regional secondary data, and use appropriate analytical modeling to provide empirical evidence of influencing factors on innovation creation across rural and urban firms. © 2018, Giri Aryal, John Mann, Scott Loveridge and Satish Joshi.


Tags: cea reports, center for economic analysis

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