BIGPROD: Addressing productivity paradox with big data: implications to policy making

The current problem of the European economy is a paradox: EU Member States have innovating economies but they fail to achieve increases in productivity, wages and domestic growth. The EU-funded BIGPROD project aims to broaden present econometrics methodologies with theoretically sound ‘Big Data’ operationalised measures, validated through pilots and communicated to relevant stakeholders – a method achieved by uncovering the origins of the slowdown of productivity in many Western economies. The BigProd model will be operationalised through a random stratified sample of up to 200 000 European companies. This proposed approach is highly novel and will help create new policies to solve issues of low productivity. BIGPROD is focusing on Big Data based analysis of productivity using webscraped data.


This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 870822.




BIGPROD Project Outputs: BIGPROD on ResearchGate


BIGPROD Public Access Data: BIGPROD Data on Dataverse

Using big data to explore the global productivity slowdown: BIGPROD meeting in Brussels


This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 870822

BIGPROD’s official kick-off meeting took place at the Maastricht University Brussels Campus on 22 January 2020. The goal of the BIGPROD project is to extend existing econometric approaches to productivity, such as the Crepon-Duguet-Mairesse (CDM) model, with theoretically sound ‘Big data’ measures that are operationalised, validated through pilots and communicated to relevant stakeholders.

This is achieved by uncovering the origins of the productivity slowdown in most Western economies. Based on this understanding, BIGPROD will extend the CDM model to better account for changes in the innovation process and utilise measures enabled by ‘Big data’. The operationalisation and theoretical framework will be validated using a multi-criteria impact assessment approach.

The validation will include three pilots based on issues arising from the research literature on challenges of existing measures of productivity. These are i) high technology and digitalisation, ii) low technology and innovation outcomes, and iii) services and incumbent entrant dynamics. To allow for full integration with the policy cycle, the project will incorporate a deep stakeholder consultation mitigating any skills gap, creating transparency, enabling stakeholder influence in sources and tools used, and enabling policymakers being informed on utilising tools and pilots.

The BIGPROD consortium is made up of researchers from the VTT Technical Research Centre (Finland), the Public Policy and Management Institute (Lithuania), Fraunhofer ISI Institute for Systems and Innovation Research (Germany), UNU-MERIT, Maastricht University (the Netherlands), Delft University of Technology (the Netherlands), and the University of Strathclyde (United Kingdom).

The project is a Research and Innovation Action in the EU’s Horizon 2020 Work Programme: Europe in a changing world – Inclusive, innovative and reflective societies. It was launched as a call for proposals with the Call Topic: ‘Using big data approaches in research and innovation policy making’ under the 2018-2020 Calls on ‘Socioeconomic and cultural transformations in the context of the fourth industrial revolution’.


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    BIGPROD project