Internal and External Discipline: The Effect of Project Leadership and Government Monitoring on the Performance of R&D Consortia



R&D consortia among private firms, universities and public research institutes have been attracting increasing attention as an effective means of promoting innovation. Especially for SMEs, such collaboration provides opportunities to access advanced scientific knowledge. This paper empirically examines the determinants of project performance of publicly funded R&D consortia in Japan using original survey data. Specifically, it bridges research gaps by examining whether and how project leadership and government monitoring improve innovation performance of R&D consortia. Our empirical estimation using a probit model shows that, as expected, project leadership by a private firm (as compared to a university or a public research institute), and specifically project leader's coordination capability, significantly increases the probability of project success. We also confirm that project performance is positively affected by the strictness of project monitoring and evaluation, but negatively affected by strict application procedure and budget control.

Hiroyuki Okamuro is a Professor at the Graduate School of Economics of Hitotsubashi University, Japan, and a visiting research fellow at the National Institute of Science and Technology Policy (NISTEP). He received his M.A. from Hitotsubashi University and his Ph.D. in Economics (Dr. rer. pol.) from the University of Bonn, Germany. His major research interests are entrepreneurship and innovation. He has published numerous papers in international journals such as Journal of Economic Behaviour and Organisation, Research Policy, Journal of Technology Transfer, Small Business Economics, Journal of Small Business Management, International Entrepreneurship and Management Journal, and Journal of Banking and Finance. Currently he is a vice-president of the Japan Academy of Small Business Studies (JASBS) and an associate editor of the Journal of Small Business Management.