Working Paper

Are Newly Exporting Firms more Innovative? Findings from Matched Spanish Innovators


  • Hanley
  • A.
  • Monreal-Pérez
  • J.
Publication Date

The prevalence of Internet-based sales by exporters vs. non-exporters is highlighted in a recent World Bank Report (Ferro, 2011) suggesting the use of sophisticated processes when selling overseas. We investigate the count of new process/ product innovations for a group of newly exporting Spanish firms vs. a non-exporter control group. We use propensity score kernel matching and difference-in-differences to help deal with endogenous exporting, sunk exporting costs and common macroeconomic shocks. Our results confirm that selection into exporting is largely driven by productivity and industry technological differences, consistent with exporting sunk costs. We find some evidence of ‘technology upgrading’ through higher contemporaneous process innovation rates.

Kiel Institute Expert


JEL Classification
F14, F23, O3

Key Words

  • exporting
  • innovation
  • Learning-by-exporting
  • Propensity Score Kernel Matching