community of stakeholders about the importance of measuring innovation. Much work has been done on a variety of aspects of measuring intellectual property, valuing patents, rethinking the financial reports, and a whole range of issues, to which the committee called attention, raising awareness of the importance of innovation itself and the need to measure it. The other recommendation for businesses is that they participate in research activities themselves and make innovation information available to outside researchers.

On the research front, the committee recommended further work aimed at identifying and assessing innovation outcome measures. Thus far, measures of innovation have emphasized R&D, patents, intellectual property, and other inputs—all very important—but the committee recommended going further to focus on innovation output and how that affects the economy. The committee also recommended that researchers work to identify gaps in innovation data and how they might be filled, analyzing relationships between innovation activities and collaboration, innovation performance, and firm performance.

One of the concepts that was raised by both the academic and business members of the committee, as well as in the public comments, is the importance of collaboration—within the firm, between innovators and the producers, among firms, and between companies and the government and companies and researchers globally. Collaboration, though very difficult to measure, seems to be important, in the view of many.

Glassman reported that, upon publication of the final report, the secretary of commerce asked BEA to work with BLS to provide a comprehensive accounting of the effect of high-tech goods and services on growth and productivity. BEA plans to unveil a design for a supplemental innovation account this year and is working with NSF to expand and collect R&D information on innovation-related inputs.



The National Academies | 500 Fifth St. N.W. | Washington, D.C. 20001
Copyright © National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved.
Terms of Use and Privacy Statement