It’s no surprise Australia’s R&D spending has crashed


Official data shows that Australia’s gross expenditure on research and development fell to 1.79% of GDP in 2017-18, down from 1.88% in 2015-16. This compares with an OECD average of 2.37% for developed nations. Business expenditure on R&D fell from one per cent of GDP to 0.9% over the two-year period, while the OECD average was 1.49%. Universities Australia Catriona Jackson has warned of the economic implications of the decline in R&D spending. From The Australian:

According to universities, [Australia’s R&D spending] is a “worrying portent for Australia’s future economic growth”.

“We know today’s investments in research and development breakthroughs will determine the size of future dividends paid back into Australia’s economy and living standards,” Universities Australia chief executive Catriona Jackson said…

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About the author
Leith van Onselen is Chief Economist at the MB Fund and MB Super. He is also a co-founder of MacroBusiness. Leith has previously worked at the Australian Treasury, Victorian Treasury and Goldman Sachs.