A recent stream in the program evaluation literature has focussed on the estimation of causal effects in the presence of continuous treatments. Dose-response functions based on propensity-score methodologies can be employed, under the unconfoundedness assumption, to perform this analysis. An interesting area of application is that of R&D subsidisation programmes, where little is known about what is the right size of subsidies or of the underlying private investments to be targeted. Focussing on a regional small-business R&D programme implemented in Italy, we estimate a flexible dose-response function and find a roughly inverse U-shaped relation between subsidy and future R&D investment.
Autore: Chiara Bocci, Marco Mariani
Publication details: Published in Scienze Regionali. Italian Journal of Regional Science , 2015, supplement to n. 3, special issue on “Ex-post assessment of firms incentives in local economies”