R&D - Research and development expenditure as a proportion of GDP in NZ and selected countries 2012–2020

Stats NZ


Research and development (R&D): R&D performed by enterprises are generally investigative work that is of actual or potential use in the development of new or enhanced materials, products, devices, processes, or services. R&D directed towards duplicating work already developed by others is only included if the knowledge or technology required for the development is not available to the enterprise.

Data calculation/treatment

GDP is based on Stats NZ's GDP current price expenditure measure for the year ended 31 March. GDP figures for 2020 are provisional.
Stats NZ sourced figures for countries other than New Zealand from Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) Main Science and Technology Indicators (MSTI).

For more information



Only businesses that Stats NZ pre-identified as carrying out R&D are included. The business sector includes central and local government-owned trading enterprises.
The government sector excludes central and local government-owned trading enterprises but includes scientific research.
The higher education sector includes 8 universities (and their commercial arms).


Expenditure figures exclude GST.

Changes to data collection/processing

In this survey, businesses were asked to report on the last financial year for which information was available as at August 2019. The R&D tax incentive came into effect for the 2019/20 April tax year. Data in this release therefore only reflects a part-year impact of the R&D tax incentive.

In 2019 the survey was conducted for the business sector only.

Data provided by

Stats NZ

Dataset name

Research and Development Survey: Tables 2020



How to find the data

At URL provided, download 'Research and development survey: 2020' from the 'Download Data' heading

Import & extraction details

File as imported: Research and Development Survey: Tables 2020

From the dataset Research and Development Survey: Tables 2020, this data was extracted:

  • Sheet: 15
  • Range: C8:M35
  • Provided: 144 data points

Dataset originally released on:

April 16, 2021

About this dataset

The Research and Development Survey, conducted every two years, is a joint survey with the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE). The survey measures the level of research and development (R&D) activity, employment, and expenditure by business sector enterprises, government departments, government-owned trading entities, and universities.

Method of collection/Data provider

The R&D Survey is a postal survey consisting of four questionnaires: a business questionnaire, a government questionnaire, a CRI questionnaire, and a higher education (universities) questionnaire. These questionnaires are specifically designed to capture data on R&D from these different organisation types.
Stats NZ requested information for the last financial year within the 12 months ending 30 September.