The share of research and development (R&D) expenditures in GDP in 2021 was 1.27%
In 2021, a total of 5.5 billion kuna was spent on R&D activity in the Republic of Croatia, which was an increase of 15.5% compared to the previous year. Of the total funds intended for R&D, the largest amount of funds was spent in the business enterprise sector, i.e. 46.5%. It was followed by higher education with 32.3%, while the smallest amount of funds was spent in the government and private non-profit sector, i.e. 21.1%.
The largest share of expenditure on R&D was accounted for by labour costs, 62.5%. Other current costs accounted for 22.8% of total expenditure, while capital expenditure accounted for only 14.7%.
Observing the sources of funds for R&D for total sectors, the largest amount was funded by units with internal funds, 42.9%, followed by the central and local government with 33.1%. A detailed analysis by sectors shows that enterprises mostly finance R&D with internal funds (77.4%), while the government and private non-profit sector (58.0%) and higher education (62.0%) are mostly financed by the central and local government.
The total R&D personnel in 2021 amounted to 27 424, which was 8.8% more than in the previous year. Of the total R&D personnel, 13 247 (48.3%) were women.
The employees of units performing the R&D were mostly engaged in the R&D activity, 93.2% of them, while 6.8% of the total R&D personnel were hired under contractual agreement or author’s contract. The share of researchers in the total R&D personnel was 61.5% (out of which 48.8% were women). Among the researchers, there were 64.1% of doctors of science (the share of women among the researchers with a doctoral degree was 49.2%).
The R&D work may be the employees’ main activity or their additional activity in part-time employment. In order to present actual engagement of R&D employees, a full-time equivalent (FTE) is used in line with the standards of international statistics. The FTE is considered a main indicator of R&D personnel for the purpose of international comparison.
Expressed as a full-time equivalent, there were a total of 16 528.2 person-years employed in R&D in 2021 (i.e. persons in full-time employment in R&D), out of which 47.2% were women. There were 9 507.7 researchers expressed as FTE.
Regarding the sectoral distribution, 371 out of 529 observation units belonged to the business enterprise sector, 64 to the government and private non-profit sector and 94 to the higher education.
1 MAIN R&D INDICATORS, 2021
2 GROSS DOMESTIC EXPENDITURE ON R&D, BY SECTORS AND TYPES OF EXPENDITURES, 2021
3 EXPENDITURE ON R&D IN BUSINESS ENTERPRISE SECTOR, TOTAL R&D PERSONNEL AND RESEARCHERS IN FULL-TIME EQUIVALENT, BY ENTERPRISE SIZE, 2021
4 SOURCES OF FUNDS FOR R&D, 2021
5 R&D PERSONNEL, BY TYPE OF EMPLOYMENT, SECTORS, OCCUPATION IN R&D AND SEX, 2021
6 RESEARCHERS, BY TYPE OF EMPLOYMENT, SECTORS, EDUCATIONAL ATTAINMENT AND SEX, 2021
7 R&D PERFORMING UNITS, BY SECTORS AND FIELDS OF SCIENCE, 2021
Purpose of the survey
The purpose of the Research and Development survey is to monitor the R&D activity in the Republic of Croatia. The survey is conducted every year with the aim of collecting and publishing data on R&D personnel, expenditure and sources of funds for R&D, as well as the results of the R&D activity. The survey results enable the measurement of research and development activities in the Republic of Croatia and represent a part of the basis for adopting national policy on research and development activity and monitoring its implementation. They also represent official data on the research and development activity in the Republic of Croatia that are published in national and international publications and databases. In addition to continuous monitoring of research and development activities, the survey is important for the calculation of GDP.
The survey is conducted on the basis of the Official Statistics Act (NN, No. 25/20). The legal basis of the European Union for the implementation of the survey is Decision No. 1608/2003/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 22 July 2003 concerning the production and development of Community statistics on science and technology and Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) No. 995/2012 of 26 October 2012 laying down detailed rules for the implementation of Decision No. 1608/2003/EC.
Sources and methods of data collection
Data are the result of statistical processing of annual reports collected from legal units dealing with the R&D in the Republic of Croatia in the 2021 calendar year, from business sector on the Annual Report on R&D for Enterprises (IR-1 form), from government and private non-profit sector on the Annual Report on R&D for Government and Private Non-Profit Sector (IR-2 form) and from institutions of higher education on the Annual Report on R&D for Higher Education (IR-3 form). The forms were sent to the reporting units via electronic mail, along with general instructions and attachments required to fill out the forms. The reporting units returned the filled forms in the same way.
The reference period to which data on R&D personnel and expenditure refer is the entire 2021.
Pursuant to the Official Statistics Act (NN, No. 25/20), the confidentiality of all data provided by the reporting units in the form is guaranteed. The data collected are used solely for statistical purposes and are published in aggregated form.
Coverage and comparability
The statistical survey entitled Research and Development in 2021 covers legal units on the territory of the Republic of Croatia that are known or assumed to be engaged in the R&D activity. Due to the importance of research and development (R&D), which is seen as an initiator of economic growth and innovations, various data sources have been analysed in order to improve the survey coverage and to identify hitherto unknown legal units engaged in R&D. The following sources have been used: Register of Scientific Organisations of the Ministry of Science and Education, Survey on Innovation Activities in Croatian Enterprises (enterprises that indicated that they are engaged in R&D activities), Statistical Business Register of the Croatian Bureau of Statistics, previous Research and Development surveys and the project database within the Horizon 2020 programme for the Republic of Croatia for data on funds allocated by applicants (EU_CORDIS base), information on awarded grants to enterprises from the European Structural and Investment Funds, a list of scientific institutions of the Croatian Scientific Bibliography (CROSBI), a list of funded HAMAG-BICRO projects as well as a list of legal entities that have reported investments in R&D in the Annual Report on Gross Investment in Fixed Assets (INV-P form) for 2019. The analysis of the mentioned sources resulted in the basic list of 1 457 reporting units, to which a form was sent.
The completed form was submitted by 529 units, 736 units responded that they were not engaged in the R&D activity and 192 units did not respond in any way. Data in this First Release present aggregate results for 529 units engaged in the R&D activity.
The 2021 data published in this First Release are comparable with data for the previous five years. Data for 2016 are not fully comparable with data from previous years due to the improvement of a number of statistical production processes and the interruption in time series.
Until 1996, the statistics on scientific research was compiled by means of the Annual Report for Legal Entities Engaged in Science and Research and Legal Entities Engaged in Research and Development (NIRO form), which covered all legal entities engaged in science and research as well as research units within enterprises and institutions, and all institutions of higher education that were recorded with the Register of the Ministry of Science and Technology of the Republic of Croatia in the referent year.
Since 1997, the sector approach has been introduced, based on the international methodology – the Frascati Manual 2002 – and aimed at the expansion of the business enterprise sector as the principal domain of research and development in the world. Data for the period from 1997 to 2003 were collected from business enterprises employing more than a hundred persons, the 2004 data were collected from business enterprises employing more than ten persons and, since 2005, enterprises with less than ten employees as well as private non-profit sector have been covered. Since 2013, the private non-profit sector has been presented together with the government sector due to the small number of units.
Definitions and explanations
Definitions of the R&D field are based on the international methodology – the Frascati Manual 2015 (Frascati Manual 2015: Guidelines for Collecting and Reporting Data on Research and Experimental Development, The Measurement of Scientific, Technological and Innovation Activities, publisher: Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development – OECD, Paris, 2015).
Research and development (R&D) comprise systematic creative work aimed at increasing knowledge about man, culture and society and its application in practice. For an activity to be an R&D activity, it must satisfy five criteria. The activity must be novel, creative, uncertain, systematic and transferable and/or reproducible. There are three types of research and development: basic research, applied research and experimental development.
Basic research is a theoretical or experimental work, which mainly aims at attaining to new knowledge about basics of phenomena and facts with no practical application.
Applied research is a theoretical or experimental work, which mainly aims at attaining to new knowledge and which is primarily focused on achieving practical objectives.
Experimental development is a systematic work based on the results of scientific research and practical experience, aimed at creating new materials, products and systems as well as at introducing new or improving existing processes.
Business enterprise sector comprises enterprises and institutions the main activity of which is production of goods and services intended for market at commercial price. The business enterprise sector includes public enterprises, as well as non-profit institutions that are market producers of goods or services.
Government sector comprises all units of central and local government, including social security funds, except institutions of higher education, as well as all non-profit institutions that are controlled by government units, and that are not themselves part of the Higher education sector.
Private non-profit sector comprises non-market, non-profit institutions serving households (that is, the general public), except those mainly controlled and financed by government, their main characteristic being that they should not be the source of revenue or profit to the institutions controlling them.
Higher education includes all institutions providing formal tertiary education programmes, whatever their source of finance or legal status, and all research institutes and centres that have their R&D activities under the direct control of, or administered by, tertiary education institutions.
Gross domestic expenditure on R&D (GERD) is the total intramural expenditure on R&D performed in the national territory during the reporting calendar year. GERD includes domestically performed R&D that is financed from abroad but excludes funding for R&D performed abroad. Intramural R&D expenditures are all current expenditures and gross fixed capital expenditures for R&D performed within reporting unit, irrespective of the source of funds.
Current expenditures comprise labour costs and other current costs used in R&D.
Labour costs include compensations of employees (wages and salaries and social contributions paid by an employer), vocational training costs and other labour costs.
Other current costs comprise material costs, costs of persons hired under contractual agreement of author’s contract, acquiring services to support intramural R&D and other costs (costs of indirect services).
Capital expenditures are the annual gross amount paid for the acquisition of fixed assets that are used repeatedly or continuously in the performance of R&D for more than one year. They comprise investing in land and buildings, machinery and equipment, computer software and patents, licences, studies and projects.
Total R&D personnel include all persons engaged directly in R&D, whether employed by the reporting unit or external contributors (persons hired under contractual agreement or author’s contract) fully integrated into the unit’s R&D activities, as well as those providing direct services for the R&D activities (such as R&D managers, administrators, technicians). According to the recommendations of the Frascati Manual 2015, persons who work less than 10% of full-time hours are not included.
Researchers are professionals engaged in the conception or creation of new knowledge. They conduct research and improve or develop concepts, theories, models, techniques instrumentation, software or operational methods.
Technicians and equivalent staff are persons whose main tasks require technical knowledge and experience in one or more fields of engineering, the physical and life sciences, or the social sciences, humanities and the arts. They participate in R&D by performing scientific and technical tasks involving the application of concepts and operational methods and the use of research equipment, normally under the supervision of researchers.
Expert associates are persons with higher education employed to perform expert jobs (librarians, IT professionals, information specialists, etc.), who participate in the scientific and research and R&D work, but are not the managers of R&D projects.
Other supporting staff are employees who perform all the activities that directly contribute to the R&D performance, which are not performed by researchers or technicians and expert associates. These activities include secretarial and other administrative tasks, the management of materials or equipment required for the R&D project implementation, supporting activities related to R&D such as planning, information and financial support, legal services, assistance in the assembly, adjustment, maintenance and repair of scientific equipment and instruments. Managerial and administrative staff who mainly deal with financial and personnel issues and general administration also perform the aforementioned activities if their activities are directly related to R&D projects.
Full-time equivalent (FTE) is expressed in person-years and presents time as a share of full working time in which persons in employment are engaged in the work related to R&D (for example, if a person was engaged in works related to R&D for six months in full working time, it is expressed as 0.5 full-time equivalent – 0.5 FTE).
|GDP||gross domestic product|
|HAMAG-BICRO||Croatian Agency for SMEs, Innovations and Investments|
|NN||Narodne novine, official gazette of the Republic of Croatia|
|OECD||Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development|
|0.0||value not zero but less than 0.05 of the unit of measure used|
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