Return of Investment (ROI) in Research and Development (R&D): Towards a framework

Hassanzadeh, Mohammad; Bigdeli, Tahereh Bozorg

There is a significant relationship between the development of countries and their investment on research and development (R&D). Often, investments on science is seen as a resource of national prestige in countries. An outstanding part of spending go to the universities as part of science policy utilization. For that, most of investigations on return of investments (ROI) on science focus on universities as the main authorities of scientific endeavor. The main issue is that, calculating ROI of R&D is not as simple as the industry of service sectors. In industry and service input and output of the process is clearly calculable. For example a manger in industry sector is able to calculate the cost of product and services. But in science it is not simple to calculate the cost of products because of variety and complexity of resources allocated for its production. A paper as an output of a scientific endeavor easily is not calculable in terms of financial formula. Sometimes a scientific finding save the life of millions of people and provide society with bunch of opportunities and guide the communities towards prosperous life. These are not simply calculable in term of ROI investigations. Most of scientometrics studies focuses on the determined document based outputs of the R&D systems. Since financial inputs play crucial role in progress of R&D systems, taking them in account when calculating the efficacy of this system will provide us with clearer image of R&D performance. This research aimed to focus more on financial aspects of R&D performance in universities forward utilizing some sort of knowledge economy framework. For that, we strive to formulate the expenditure has been carried out in various levels of a university which results in a unit of scientific paper, highly cited paper, fruitful actors, and etc. we have focused on the Tarbiat Modares University (TMU) a fully accredited state university for graduate studies with more than 7000 students and almost 1000 faculty members. TMU always ranks between top 3 Iranian universities.


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