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The United Kingdom has a world-class research system and, in comparison with similar industrialised countries, appears to be 'punching above its weight' in terms of research excellence. However, it could be at a comparative disadvantage in other areas of the research system, particularly in terms of investment.

This study investigates the relationship between spending and research performance through an econometric analysis that aims to understand the consequences of lower levels of investment in research. It also investigates potential nonlinearities in the relationship between spending and performance through a series of case studies.

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The research described in this report was prepared for the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills and conducted by RAND Europe.

This report is part of the RAND research report series. RAND reports present research findings and objective analysis that address the challenges facing the public and private sectors. All RAND reports undergo rigorous peer review to ensure high standards for research quality and objectivity.

RAND is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.