8112.0 - Research and Experimental Development, All Sector Summary, Australia, 2006-07  
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 21/10/2008   
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1 The statistics presented in this release are a summary of expenditure and human resources devoted to R&D performed in Australia by organisations within the Business, Government, Higher education and Private non-profit sectors for the 2006-07 reference period.

2 The data in this publication have been released previously on an individual sector basis and at more detailed levels (see paragraph 11 of these Explanatory Notes).


3 Data from each sector were collected separately in the surveys of Research and Experimental Development:

  • Business - compiled from data collected from businesses in the Survey of Research and Experimental Development, Businesses in respect of the year ended 30 June 2007. The survey was conducted by mail questionnaire and a 94% response was achieved.
  • Government and Private non-profit - compiled from data collected from organisations in the Survey of Research and Experimental Development, Government and Private non-profit organisations in respect of the year ended 30 June 2007. The survey was conducted by mail questionnaire and a 90% response rate was achieved.
  • Higher education - compiled from data collected from higher education institutions in the Survey of Research and Experimental Development, Higher Education in respect of the year ended 31 December 2006.

4 GDP and GSP figures used to derive R&D expenditure ratios are referenced in the tables below.

Gross Domestic Product, current prices


545 698
607 759
689 262
781 675
897 642
1 046 063

Source: Australian National Accounts: National Income, Expenditure and Product, June 2008 (cat. no. 5206.0)

Gross state product, current prices


300 636
225 129
159 778
61 607
102 646
17 637
11 380
18 828
335 144
247 440
195 704
69 540
141 368
21 088
14 494
21 586

Source: Australian National Accounts, State Accounts, 2006-07 (cat. no. 5220.0)


5 R&D as collected by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) is defined in accordance with the OECD standard as 'creative work undertaken on a systematic basis in order to increase the stock of knowledge, including knowledge of man, culture and society, and the use of this stock of knowledge to devise new applications'. Although outside the economic boundary of R&D as defined by the OECD, R&D performed overseas by Australian organisations is included in the data presented.

6 For a more comprehensive interpretation of the definition of R&D activity, see the Australian Standard Research Classification (ASRC), 1998 (cat. no. 1297.0) or refer to the OECD publication Proposed Standard Practice for Surveys on Research and Experimental Development ('Frascati Manual' 2002).


7 The sector classification used in the compilation of these statistics is adapted from the guidelines specified by the OECD for use in the conduct of R&D surveys. There are four distinct sectors:
  • Business - includes all businesses whose primary activity is the production of goods or services for sale to the general public at a price intended to cover at least the cost of production, and the private non-profit institutions mainly serving them.
  • Government - includes all Commonwealth, state and local government departments and authorities.
      • The ABS Government R&D survey excludes: local government; universities (which are included in the Higher education sector); and public sector organisations mainly engaged in trading or financial activities (which are included in the Business sector).
  • Higher education - includes all universities and other institutions of post-secondary education, whatever their source of finance or legal status.
      • The ABS Higher education R&D survey excludes other higher education institutions, such as colleges of Technical and Further Education colleges.
  • Private non-profit - includes private or semi-public incorporated organisations which are established with the intention of not making a profit.


8 The statistics in this release are classified to industry in accordance with the Australian and New Zealand Standard Industrial Classification (ANZSIC), 2006 (cat. no. 1292.0).


9 With the exception of the Higher education sector, estimates for location relate to the region(s) in which the R&D was performed. For the Higher education sector, the estimates represent the main campus or head office location of the reporting institution, with the exception of the Australian Defence Force Academy (ADFA) which is shown against the Australian Capital Territory.


10 This release presents statistics classified by: Socio-economic objective; Research fields, courses and disciplines; and Type of activity. Data providers self-classify R&D expenditure based on their interpretation of OECD/ABS definitions. The ABS makes every effort to ensure correct and consistent interpretation and reporting of these data and applies consistent processing methodologies. See also the Reliability of Statistics and Revisions section of the Technical Note.


11 Users may also wish to refer to the following ABS releases:
12 Relevant OECD publications include:
      Main Science and Technology Indicators 2008/1
      Proposed Standard Practice for Surveys on Research and Experimental Development ('Frascati Manual' 2002)


13 Other information, including data cubes in spreadsheet format, relating to R&D and innovation can be found on the ABS website <www.abs.gov.au>. See the Innovation, Science and Technology Home page under Themes/Industry.


14 As well as the statistics included in this and related releases, the ABS may have other relevant data available on request. Inquiries should be made to the National Information and Referral Service on 1300 135 070.


15 Where figures have been rounded, discrepancies may occur between the sum of the component items and totals.