Research Report

Understanding sectoral absorptive capacity in the UK – a new analysis

ERC Research Report



Associated Themes
  • Innovation

Absorptive capacity has been defined as an organisation’s ability to recognize the value of innovation and information, assimilate it, and then apply it when making decisions. Sectors in which firms exhibit high levels of absorptive capacity are likely to be able to diffuse new technologies and innovations most rapidly. Supporting R&D and innovation in these sectors is likely to maximise the societal value of publicly supported innovation.

This report provides an overview and comparison of absorptive capacity in 60 UK sectors based on a range of indicators compiled from firm level data sources including the Business Structures Database, ONS Intangible Investment data, the UK Innovation Survey, and the Employer Skills Survey.