R&D labs of large corporations, together with academic institutions, tend to be the most important seeds when you want to establish an innovation cluster, aka ecosystem. However, why such R&D labs are located here or there? How can you attract them? Local and national level policy makers can now have a clue.
In fact, the Government-University-Industry Research Roundtable (GUIRR) of the U.S. National Academies, commissioned a survey to find out the factors influencing the locations of R&D facilities, to base policy discussions upon a structured set of data rather than anecdote and case studies. Over 200 multinational companies, across 15 industries, were then approached. Respondents to the survey were high-level R&D personnel involved with R&D location decisions, being asked to avoid general and their own perceptions. Moreover, when asking about location, questions were in terms of employees rather than mere money investment. Finally, respondents were instructed to pick the site most central to their firm’s R&D strategy, as a reference to their answers.
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