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  • 1 University of Sussex, Falmer Science Policy Research Unit, Mantell Building BN1 9RF Brighton (UK) BN1 9RF Brighton (UK)
  • | 2 OECD, Falmer Mantell Building Paris (France) Mantell Building Paris (France)
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Abstract  

The economic and social transformation of countries of central and eastern Europe has deeply affected their S&T systems. However, conceptual and methodological problems in monitoring transformation of their S&T systems are not trivial. In this paper we analyse conceptual and methodological issues involved in measuring S&T activities in the socialist and post-socialist period across the most important S&T indicators (R&D, US and national patents; innovation surveys; bibliometrics). Our conclusions are that: i) the process of methodological harmonisation of S&T indicators has progressed considerably and we have provided some evidence in that respect; ii) the use of similar or identical indicators (business R&D, innovation counts, patents, citations) when making inter-country or inter-temporal comparisons should be approached with caution because of the significant differences between the socialist and post-socialist periods as well as between post-socialist R&D systems and R&D in other market economies. This latter applies especially to the interpretation of business R&D data in the post-socialist period.