Innovative behavior and economic performance in the Uruguayan Manufacturing Industry 2001-2003

Innovation activities are recognized to influence significantly the performance of the firms. The most common interpretation of this relationship would state that a better innovation behavior could always produce a better firm’s performance. Nevertheless, in the Latin American economic context, signed by great GDP fluctuations and poor stability of economic policies, the study of this relationship requires a specific methodological effort to characterize different patterns of economic performance, in order to analyze their relationship with the firms’ innovative behavior.

For this purpose, we analyzed a set of indicators about firm’s economic performance and firm’s innovative behavior, in the Uruguayan manufacturing industry. The relationship between this indicators shows that there is not an univocal association between economic performance and innovative behavior. Conversely, it’s possible to distinguish different innovative behavior patterns associated to diverse "styles" of economic performance.

By characterizing the innovative behavior, we are able to develop a more precise approach that may contribute to design a set of policies, with the purpose of achieving a long-term sustainable development of the manufacturing industry.