Ricerca e sviluppo

Research and development in Italy

In 2013, in current price terms, Italy's gross domestic expenditure on Research and Development (GERD) was near to 21 billion euro. It increased by 2.3% compared to 2012. In constant price terms, it increased by 1.1%.

GERD represented 1.31% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP), updated according to the new system of national accounts (Esa 2010). There was an increase compared to 2012 (1.27%).

In current price terms business enterprises expenditure on R&D (BERD) increased by 3.4%, accounting for 54.7% of total R&D spent in 2013. Government's expenditure on R&D decreased by 3.4% (14.0% of total R&D spent in 2013). R&D expenditure in the higher education sector and in the private non profit sector rose by 3.3% (respectively 28.3% and 3.0% of total R&D spent in 2013).

Compared to 2012, current expenditure on intramural R&D increased in all geographical areas. In the North-West area it was +0.6% and in the North-East +4.0%. In 2012 these two areas accounted for 60.3% of GERD. Increases were also recorded in central Italy (+1.6%) and in the South and Islands area (+5.3%).

In 2013, the number of public and private employees involved in R&D activities (measured in terms of "full-time equivalent units") amounted to 246,764 units; it increased by 2.7% compared to 2012.

R&D personnel increased in business enterprises (+3.8% ), public institutions (+3.1%), private non profit institutions and the higher education sector (+1.0%).

The number of researchers (in terms of full-time equivalents) was 116,163 units, a 4.9% rise compared to 2012.

Provisional data for 2013 showed a decrease in GERD both in current terms (-1.0% compared to 2012) and a decrease of 1.8% in constant price terms.

Provisional data for 2015 showed a decrease of 2.9% in public institutions and an increase of 1.0% in BERD (not available forecast data for the universities).

The Italy's Government support for R&D activities, measured by the Government budget appropriations or outlay for R&D (GBAORD), amounting to 8.1 billion euro for 2014 (initial forecasts of expenditure), was down compared to the forecast expenditure settled in 2013 (8.4 billion euro).

For information
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Institutions, International Trade and Consumer Prices Directorate

Valeria Mastrostefano
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Industry and construction, Services
document typology:
Press release
Reference period
Year 2013
Date of publication
10 December 2015
Full text
(pdf 150 KB)

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