Types of innovation activities

As far as forms of innovative activities are concerned, there are important similarities in both datasets (see Table 1). Both datasets report that among innovative activities, major role belongs to purchases of new machines and equipment: 62% of all firms, which do innovations, in the Goskomstat survey, and 64% of corresponding firms in the IET sample are involved in this type of activities. In the IET questioner, we also asked for the introduction of new products, and 61% of firms, which do innovations, reported that they have done it in the last three years. In-house R&D are doing 33% of innovating firms from the IET sample, and additional 16% of enterprisers outsource R&D. Goskomstat divides research and development into two separate activities, and reports that about 33% of innovative firms are involved in research, while 37% develop new products or technologies. Almost twice as many firms, which do R&D, are doing it in house. The median spending on R&D (among firms, which do R&D) is 2% of total sales in the IET dataset, and less than 1% in the Goskomstat dataset. Education of personnel was done on 24% of innovating firms in the Goskomstat study, and 31% of innovating firms in the IET study. About 8% of innovative firms in the Goskomstat sample, and 7% in the IET sample purchase licenses. Introduction of new technologies varies a lot: if in Goskomstat data 16% of firms are buying new technologies, in the other sample this number goes up to 36%.

Both surveys contain question about marketing studies. About 19% of Goskomstat firms, and 31% of IET firms do it. Goskomstat asks about purchases of new computer programs, and 27% of innovating firms did it. The question about education of personnel is formulated differently in two datasets. Goskomstat specifically asks about innovation-related education of personnel, while IET treats all education activities as innovations. This difference in formulations may explain difference in responses: only 24% of the GKS sample in comparison to 45% of the IET sample reported that they educated their personnel.

The IET questioner tries to separate development of absolutely new products and copying of already existing ones (see Table 2). Surprisingly high percentage of firms claim that they introduced absolutely new product or technology (27% and 13% respectively). About one third of all firms report that the new product they introduced is a small improvement to the one, which existed before.

Notice, that in Table 2 percentages do not sum up to 100%. This is related to the fact that firms were given the opportunity to give several answers to this question.                                                  It

is possible that firms introduced several innovations during the period in question, and these innovations were of different types. Among 727 firms, which replied to the questioner, 226 firms either do not make innovations, or did not specify their type, 196 firms only conducted imitating innovations (raw 3 to 6 in Table 2), 148 firms introduced only absolutely new products or technologies (raw 1 and 2 in Table 2), and the remaining 157 firms have innovations of both types (marked more than one answer in Table 2). Table 3 provides cross tabulation of answers to the questions about activity types and characteristics of activities. In this Table and other tables, which use the same classification of firms, we call positive answers to questions 1 and 2 in Table 2 “innovations”, and answeres to questions 3-6 “imitations”. This table allows checking whether firms give reasonable and consistent answers to similar questions. Interestingly, those firms, which introduced both absolutely new innovations and imitations, are involved in innovations of all types more often. Quite reasonably, these firms, and firms, which introduce absolutely new products and technologies, are doing R&D themselves or outsource R&D more often than firms, which are involved into imitations. In contrast, the latter firms purchase machinery and equipment more often. They also educate their personnel slightly more often than the firms, which introduce absolutely new innovations. Conducting innovations may be self-educationary, so those firms, which do innovations themselves, do not need to spend time and resources on educating their personnel to use equipment, developed by other firms. However, education of new personnel is even more popular in the case of firms, which do both absolutely new innovations and imitations. Interestingly, imitating firms conduct marketing studies less often than innovating ones. The highest rate of doing marketing studies is among those enterprisers, which do both innovations and imitations.