Professor Jun Du
Professor of Economics
Professor Jun Du is Professor of economics at Aston Business School, her research revolves around the evaluation and determinants of firm performance. She has extensive experience in collaborating with researchers nationally and internationally on projects on the measurement of firm productivity, the relationship between performance and R&D and innovation, finance and investment, ownership, political economy, and internationalisation.
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- Business Demography Research Theme
Professor Jun Du is Professor of economics at Aston Business School, her research revolves around the evaluation and determinants of firm performance. She has extensive experience in collaborating with researchers nationally and internationally on projects on the measurement of firm productivity, the relationship between performance and R&D and innovation, finance and investment, ownership, political economy, and internationalisation. She is an expert in advanced econometric methodologies based on various micro-data from both developed and developing countries. Jun has published in many international journals including the Journal of Business Venturing, Journal of International Business Studies, Journal of Law and Economics, Entrepreneurship, Theory and Practice, International Journal of Industrial Organization, Research Policy, Journal of Productivity Analysis. She has been the PI, and CI, of several externally funded projects related to firm productivity and growth, including the ESRC First Grant and the most recent NESTA project on linking high growth firms and productivity. Jun is a current grant holder of Leverhulme Fellowship. She is a member of ESRC Peer Review College and associate editor of Regional Studies.
Fast-growth firms and their wider economic impact: UK evidence. Research Paper No 73
Published: 22 January 2019
Small groups of fast-growth firms make a significant contribution to job creation and economic growth. Yet we know little about their broader impact on the economy. This research investigates how the number of fast-growth firms in a region and industry impacts on growth of other firms. By linking the ONS Business Structure Database (BSD) with additional data at the industrial and regional level over the period 1997-2013, we test different channels of wider effects of fast-growth firms in the manufacturing and professional service sectors.
Fast-growth firms in the UK: definition and policy implications. Research Paper No 63
Published: 4 December 2017
This research note aims to establish an evidence-based understanding about how fast-growth firm definitions differ and what they mean to policy. Employing the UK business population data over 1998-2013, we compare and contrast several popular fast-growth firm definitions based on their coverage in the business population, the contribution to the aggregate economy and their key characteristics, all discussed in context of the conceptual grounds of these definitions. The key message from our finding is that definition matters. Fast-growth definitions in terms of employment and productivity capture rather different sets of firms, indicating potential conflict in goals. It is possible that polices supporting fast-growth of employment may impair productivity growth, and likewise productivity-driving measures may lead to dwindling employment growth. On the whole, employment-based fast-growth firms generate lots of jobs but have mixed productivity records, while productivity-based fast-growth firms have lower job creation records but show productivity superiority.
Decomposing UK aggregate labour productivity and growth: 1998-2013 using the ONS business structure database data. Research Paper No. 48
Published: 12 July 2016
This study provides a comprehensive analysis of UK labour productivity patterns and contributing factors over the 1997-2013 period. Based on the ONS Business Structure Database (BSD), we present a full picture of the UK firms’ productivity patterns in the whole economy over the examined period and in particular during the “Great Recession”, at aggregate level, sector level, and among heterogeneous groups. We observe significant business demographic changes underlying UK aggregate productivity change, featuring an increasing number of small businesses especially single-employee firms, less entrants and more exits and discuss the implications of these changes in explaining the productivity decline. When differentiating firm growth types, we find “Growth heroes” and “Decline by efficiency loss” firms over-contribute to aggregate labour productivity compared to their weight in the business population. In contrast, an already large group of ‘Decline by contraction’ firms surged over the recent recession and under-contribute to aggregate labour productivity. We highlight that within firm productivity improvement has been mainly responsible for aggregate productivity changes in the UK while resource allocation on average played a limited role in driving the aggregate productivity change.
Business Demography Research Theme
Firm Dynamics and Job Creation in the UK. White Paper No 6.
Published: 6 April 2013
A consistent theme in the discussion of attempts to stimulate economic recovery in the UK is a recognition of the need to unlock the growth potential of the private sector. This paper explores the simple question – “What types of firms create the most jobs in the UK economy?”
Business Demography Research Theme