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The Austrian example

Imst Autumn Sos Children's Village Austrian Flag

Jürgen Janger looks at what the UK can learn from Europe’s fastest-growing R&D spender.

The UK government’s stated goal of increasing R&D spending from 1.7 per cent to 2.4 per cent of GDP by 2027 is, to put it mildly, ambitious. But it is not unprecedented.

Between 1995 and 2015, Austria saw its proportionate R&D spending double, from 1.5 per cent to 3.1 per cent of GDP, growing faster than any other developed economy except for South Korea. This included an increase of 0.7 percentage points between 1998 and 2005, from 1.7 to 2.4 per cent, mirroring the UK goal. The years 2004 to 2012 saw an equally large uplift, from 2.2 to 2.9 per cent.

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