The role of government in fostering collaborative R&D projects: Empirical evidence from South Korea

Sung Joo Bae, Hyeonsuh Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


In latecomer countries, governments and their research laboratories play an important role in guiding the direction of technology development at the national level. However, the exact mechanism of how these institutional forces influence national collaborative R&D projects remains unclear and understudied. From the selection-variation process perspective of technology evolution, we argue that governments provide a strong signaling effect to attract other entities into collaborative R&D projects. Also through government research laboratories, governments promote a fair distribution of results generated from collaborative R&D projects. In addition, the involvement of diverse entities from industry and academia supplements the fair distribution of results. We provide empirical support for these arguments by analyzing 5,427 collaborative R&D projects carried out in South Korea among government research laboratories, private firms and universities. A conceptual model is developed and explained in detail to provide the theoretical basis for our arguments, while policy and practical implications are closely examined with a focus on steps that governments can take to guide national collaborative R&D projects.

Original languageEnglish
Article number119826
JournalTechnological Forecasting and Social Change
Publication statusPublished - 2020 Feb

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2019 Elsevier Inc.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Business and International Management
  • Applied Psychology
  • Management of Technology and Innovation


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