Die Überwindung der technologischen Kluft zwischen den USA und Europa

In der zweiten Hälfte der neunziger Jahre des vorigen Jahrhunderts betrug das durchschnittliche Produktivitätswachstum in Europa jährlich 0,7 %, während dieser Wert in den USA bei 1,4 % lag. Wenn man allerdings zwischen den Produzenten von Informations- und Kommunikationstechnologien (IKT) und den Anwendern solcher Technologien unterscheidet, zeigt sich, dass die Kluft im Produktivitätswachstum beinahe ausschließlich auf die Schwäche Europas im Bereich der IKT-Produzenten zurückzuführen ist. Das jährliche Produktivitätswachstum in den Anwenderbereichen der IKT-Technologien betrug in den USA zwischen 1995 und 2000 durchschnittlich 0, 63 % und lag in Europa auf einem sehr ähnlichen Niveau bei 0,41 %.

Dies bestätigt ein wohlbekanntes Faktum: Wenn es um innovative Forschung geht, wird in Europa weniger effizient gearbeitet als in den USA - entweder, weil Europa für die Forschung weniger Mittel zur Verfügung stellt, oder weil die zur Verfügung stehenden Ressourcen weniger effizient eingesetzt werden oder beides.

Sicher, die Gesamtausgaben für Forschung und Entwicklung (F&E) sind in Europa geringer als in den USA, aber der Unterschied ist nicht gravierend. In den neunziger Jahren des vorigen Jahrhunderts gaben die USA 2,8 % des BIP für F&E aus. In Deutschland waren es 2,3 %, in Großbritannien 2 % und in Frankreich 1,9 %. Dennoch beklagen europäische Regierungen die fehlenden finanziellen Ressourcen zur Förderung von F&E (ein an den Haaren herbeigezogenes Argument, wenn man den unbedeutenden Anteil der Forschungsausgaben in den überdimensionierten europäischen Budgets bedenkt). Und wenn es die Europäische Kommission genehmigt, werden innovative Unternehmen oder solche, die am ehesten in F&E investieren, subventioniert.

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