124 pages | 6 x 9
Intangible assets--which include computer software, research and development (R&D), intellectual property, workforce training, and spending to raise the efficiency and brand identification of firms--comprise a subset of services, which, in turn, accounts for three-quarters of all economic activity. Increasingly, intangibles are a principal driver of the competitiveness of U.S.-based firms, economic growth, and opportunities for U.S. workers. Yet, despite these developments, many intangible assets are not reported by companies, and, in the national economic accounts, they are treated as expenses rather than investments.
On June 23, 2008, a workshop was held to examine measurement of intangibles and their role in the U.S. and global economies. The workshop, summarized in the present volume, included discussions of a range of policy-relevant topics, including: what intangibles are and how they work; the variety and scale of emerging markets in intangibles; and what the government's role should be in supporting markets and promoting investment in intangibles.