Public Support Programs for Applied Research Conducted by Small and Medium-Sized Businesses: a Review of International Experience
The article aims to analyze national programs of the USA, the United Kingdom and Israel that support applied research conducted by small and medium-sized businesses. The author analyzes program management systems; sources of funding for the programs; approaches to the selection of thematic areas that receive funding; project evaluation and selection procedures; performance indicators of the projects supported under the programs. The two types of programs that aimed to support innovative small and medium-sized enterprises have been identified.
In the US and the UK, program management is decentralized, projects are funded entirely by the government, program funds can be awarded to thematic areas both on a “top-down” or “bottom-up” basis, a program is typically composed of three phases, though at the last phase (commercialization of the product) the government provides only administrative support rather than financial assistance.
In Israel, program management is centralized; the government offers only partial funding for research projects, they have to be co-funded by private sector; grants are awarded on a non-competitive basis; one of the main indicators of the program efficiency are royalties, which company is obligated to pay when a government assisted R&D project results in a commercially successful product.
Comparative analysis of these programs has led the author to the conclusion that it is possible to learn from the both types of programs how to improve the management systems of programs that support applied research in Russia.