Journal of the Knowledge Economy

, Volume 8, Issue 2, pp 768–788 | Cite as

ICT, Innovation and Productivity: Evidence Based on Eastern European Manufacturing Companies

  • Aleksandra SkorupinskaEmail author
  • Joan Torrent-Sellens


The main motivation behind this study is to evaluate the relationships among ICT, management practices, innovation and human capital in a sample of manufacturing enterprises in Eastern European countries. Using data from the Management, Organisation and Innovation Survey 2009 for a representative sample of 444 companies in Bulgaria, Poland, Romania, Serbia and Ukraine and using structural equation modelling and ordinary least squares, we examined direct and indirect determinants of labour productivity. The principal finding that emerged from the study is that wage was the main direct determinant of labour productivity. Moreover, the relationship between ICT and its complementarities and productivity has been established indirectly, mainly by enterprise workers’ use of the ICT. The results of the investigation bridge the gap in insufficient academic research about Eastern European countries, extend existing research on the company-level labour productivity determinants and enable comparison of the results at the international level.


Eastern European Countries Company-level Productivity Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) Innovation Manufacturing Industries 


J24 L60 O33 



We would like to thank the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development for having kindly supplied firm-level data for this project, in particular Helena Schweiger.


  1. Arvanitis, S. (2005). Computerization, workplace organization, skilled labour and firm productivity: Evidence for the Swiss business sector. Economics of Innovation and New Technology, 14(4), 225–249.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Arvanitis, S., & Loukis, E. N. (2009). Information and communication technologies, human capital, workplace organization and labour productivity: A comparative study based on firm-level data for Greece and Switzerland. Information Economics and Policy, 21(1), 43–61.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Autor, D. H., Levy, F., & Murnane, R. J. (2003). The skill content of recent technological change: An empirical exploration. Quarterly journal of economics, 118(4), 1279–1333.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Black, S. E., & Lynch, L. M. (2001). How to Compete: The Impact of Workplace Practices and Information Technology on Productivity. The Review of Economics and Statistics, 83(3), 434–445.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Black, S. E., & Lynch, L. M. (2004). What’s driving the new economy?: the benefits of workplace innovation*. The Economic Journal, 114(493), 97–116.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Bloom, N., Schweiger, H., & Van Reenen, J. (2012). The land that lean manufacturing forgot? Management practices in transition countries. Economics of Transition, 20(4), 593–635.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Bresnahan, T. F., Brynjolfsson, E., & Hitt, L. M. (2002). Information Technology, Workplace Organization, and the Demand for Skilled Labor: Firm-Level Evidence. The Quarterly Journal of Economics, 117(1), 339–376.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Brynjolfsson, E., & Hitt, L. M. (2003). Computing Productivity: Firm-Level Evidence. The Review of Economics and Statistics, 85(4), 793–808.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Burns, T., & Stalker, G. (1994). The Management of Innovation (3rd ed.). Oxford: Oxford University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Cardona, M., Kretschmer, T., & Strobel, T. (2013). ICT and productivity: conclusions from the empirical literature. Information Economics and Policy, 25(3), 109–125.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Caroli, E., & Van Reenen, J. (2001). Skill-Biased Organizational Change? Evidence from a Panel of British and French Establishments. The Quarterly Journal of Economics, 116(4), 1449–1492.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Ceccobelli, M., Gitto, S., & Mancuso, P. (2012). ICT capital and labour productivity growth: A non-parametric analysis of 14 OECD countries. Telecommunications Policy, 36(4), 282–292.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Cortes, G. M. (2016). Where have the middle-wage workers gone? a study of polarization using panel data. Journal of Labor Economics, 34(1), 63–105.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Díaz-Chao, A., Ficapal-Cusí, P., & Torrent-Sellens, J. (2013). ICT, innovation, wages and labour productivity. New evidence from small local firms. Revista de Estudios Empresariales. Segunda Época, 2, 20–45.Google Scholar
  15. Díaz-Chao, A., Sainz-González, J., & Torrent-Sellens, J. (2015). ICT, innovation, and firm productivity: New evidence from small local firms. Journal of Business Research, 68(7), 1439–1444.Google Scholar
  16. European Bank for Reconstruction and Development & World Bank (2008). Management, Organisation and Innovation (MOI) survey: Sampling Methodology.Google Scholar
  17. European Bank for Reconstruction and Development & World Bank (2010). Management, Organisation and Innovation (MOI) survey.Google Scholar
  18. Faggio, G., Salvanes, K. G., & Van Reenen, J. (2010). The evolution of inequality in productivity and wages: panel data evidence. Industrial and Corporate Change, 19(6), 1919–1951.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Gretton, P., Gali, J., & Parham, D. (2004). The effects of ICTs and complementary innovations on Australian productivity growth, in OECD (2004): The Economic Impact of ICT: Measurement, Evidence and Implications, 105–130, Paris: OECD.Google Scholar
  20. Grimes, A., Ren, C., & Stevens, P. (2012). The need for speed: impacts of internet connectivity on firm productivity. Journal of Productivity Analysis, 37(2), 187–201.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Hall, B. H., Lotti, F., & Mairesse, J. (2009). Innovation and productivity in SMEs: Empirical evidence for Italy. Small Business Economics, 33(1), 13–33.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Hall, B. H., Lotti, F., & Mairesse, J. (2013). Evidence on the Impact of R&D and ICT Investment on Innovation and Productivity in Italian Firms. Economics of Innovation and New Technology, 22(3), 300–328.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Hempell, T. (2005). Does experience matter? Innovations and the productivity of information and communication technologies in German services. Economics of Innovation and New Technology, 14(4), 277–303.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Hempell, T., & Zwick, T. (2008). New Technology, Work Organisation, and Innovation. Economics of Innovation and New Technology, 17(4), 331–354.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Hooper, D., Coughlan, J., & Mullen, M. (2008). Structural Equation Modelling: Guidelines for Determining Model Fit. Journal of Business Research Methods, 6(1), 53–60.Google Scholar
  26. Hu, L., & Bentler, P. M. (1999). Cutoff criteria for fit indexes in covariance structure analysis: Conventional criteria versus new alternatives. Structural Equation Modeling: A Multidisciplinary Journal, 6(1), 1–55.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Jorgenson, D. W., & Griliches, Z. (1967). The Explanation of Change Productivity. The Review of Economics and Studies, 34(3), 249–283.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Jorgenson, D. W., Ho, M. S., & Samuels, J. D. (2011). Information technology and US productivity growth: evidence from a prototype industry production account. Journal of Productivity Analysis, 36(2), 159–175.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Jorgenson, D. W., & Stiroh, K. J. (1999). Information Technology and Growth. American Economic Review, 89(2), 109–115.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Jorgenson, D. W., & Vu, K. (2007). Information Technology and the World Growth Resurgence. German Economic Review, 8(2), 125–145.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Jöreskog, K. G., & Sörbom, D. (2004). LISREL 8.8 for Windows. Lincolnwood, IL: Scientific Software International, Inc..Google Scholar
  32. Jovanovic, B., & Rousseau, P. L. (2005). General purpose technologies. In P. Aghion & S. N. Durlauf (Eds.), Handbook of economic growth (Vol. 1, pp. 1181–1224). Amsterdam: Elsevier.Google Scholar
  33. Jung, J., & Mercenier, J. (2014). Routinization-Biased Technical Change and Globalization: Understanding Labor Market Polarization. Economic Inquiry, 52(4), 1446–1465.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Katz, L. F. (1986). Efficiency wage theories: A partial evaluation. In S. Fischer (Ed.), NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1986 (Vol. 1, pp. 235–290). Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.Google Scholar
  35. Kline, R. B. (2011). Principles and practice of structural equation modeling (3rd ed.). New York: Guilford Press.Google Scholar
  36. Lindbeck, A., & Snower, D. J. (2000). Multitask Learning and the Reorganization of Work: From Tayloristic to Holistic Organization. Journal of Labor Economics, 18(3), 353–376.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Lallemand, T., Plasman, R., & Rycx, F. (2009). Wage Structure and Firm Productivity in Belgium. In E. P. Lazear & K. L. Shaw (Eds.), The Structure of Wages: An International Comparison (pp. 179–215). Chicago: University of Chicago Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Mahy, B., Rycx, F., & Volral, M. (2011). Wage Dispersion and Firm Productivity in Different Working Environments. British Journal of Industrial Relations, 49(3), 460–485.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Milgrom, P., & Roberts, J. (1990). The Economics of Modern Manufacturing: Technology, Strategy and Organization. The American Economic Review, 80(3), 511–528.Google Scholar
  40. Miyazaki, S., Idota, H., & Miyoshi, H. (2012). Corporate productivity and the stages of ICT development. Information Technology and Management, 13(1), 17–26.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Nayak, S. R., & Patra, S. (2013). Wage-labour productivity relationship in manufacturing sector of Odisha: An observed analysis. International Journal of Engineering Science Invention, 2(3), 8–11.Google Scholar
  42. Orbis database (2012) Bureau van Dijk. [Online]. Available at: Accessed: August 2008.Google Scholar
  43. Pilat, D. (2006). The impacts of ICT on productivity growth: Perspectives from the aggregate, industry and firm level. In M. Mas & P. Schreyer (Eds.), Growth, capital and new technologies (pp. 113–147). Bilbao: Fundación BBVA.Google Scholar
  44. Roztocki, N., & Weistroffer, H. R. (2008). Information Technology in Transition Economies. Journal of Global Information Technology Management, 11(4), 2–9.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Roztocki, N., & Weistroffer, H. R. (2011). From the Special Issue Editors: Information Technology in Transition Economies. Information Systems Management, 28(3), 188–191.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Schweiger, H., & Friebel, G. (2013). Management Quality, Ownership, Firm Performance and Market Pressure in Russia. Open Economies Review, 24(4), 763–788.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. Shapiro, C., & Stiglitz, J. E. (1984). Equilibrium unemployment as a worker discipline device. The American Economic Review, 74(3), 433–444.Google Scholar
  48. Solow, R. (1957). Technical Change and the Aggregate Production Function. Review of Economics and Statistics, 39(3), 312–320.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. Stare, M., Jaklič, A., & Kotnik, P. (2006). Exploiting ICT Potential in Service Firms in Transition Economies. The Service Industries Journal, 26(3), 287–302.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. Theodoulides, L., & Kormancova, G. (2013). The intercultural dimensions of the cultures in transition process in Central and Eastern Europe, in Contemporary Challenges towards Management III, 41- 60. Katowice: Uniwersytet Slaski w Katowicach.Google Scholar
  51. Timmer, M. P., Inklaar, R., O’Mahony, M., & Van Ark, B. (2010). Economic growth in Europe: A comparative industry perspective. Cambridge: University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. Torrent-Sellens, J., & Ficapal-Cusí, P. (2010). TIC, co-innovación y productividad empresarial: evidencia empírica para Cataluña y comparación internacional de resultados. Revista de Economía Mundial, 26, 203–233.Google Scholar
  53. Van Ark, B., & Piatkowski, M. (2004). Productivity, innovation and ICT in Old and New Europe. International Economics and Economic Policy, 1(2-3), 215–246.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  54. Venturini, F. (2015). The modern drivers of productivity. Research Policy, 44(2), 357–369.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  55. Venturini, F., Rincón-Aznar, A., & Vecchi, M. (2013). ICT as a general purpose technology: spillovers, absorptive capacity and productivity performance. National Institute of Economic and Social Research Discussion Paper, No 416.Google Scholar
  56. Winiecki, J. (2004). Determinants of Catching Up or Falling Behind: interaction of formal and informal institutions. Post-Communist Economies, 16(2), 137–152.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  57. World Bank (2013). World Development Indicators (2009). Washington, DC: World Bank.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Internet Interdisciplinary Institute (IN3)Open University of Catalonia (UOC)BarcelonaSpain
  2. 2.Economics and Business Studies Department and Internet Interdisciplinary Institute (IN3)Open University of Catalonia (UOC)BarcelonaSpain

Personalised recommendations