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Innovation and Investment Funding in the post-crisis period: have financing patterns and financial constraints of German firms changed?

Schäfer, Dorothea | Stephan, Andreas

Vierteljahrshefte zur Wirtschaftsforschung, Vol. 86 (2017), Iss. 1: pp. 129–142

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German Institute for Economic Research DIW Berlin, CeFEO at Jönköping International Business School, Jönköping University, and CERBE Center for Relationship Banking and Economics, Rom

  • Dorothea Schäfer, Dr. rer. pol., Habilitation in business economics, Diploma in Economics, Research Director Financial Markets at the German Institute for Economic Research (DIW Berlin), Adjunct Professor of Jönköping International Business School, Jönköping University; Research Fellow of the Center for Relationship Banking and Economics CERBE, Roma, Italy. Head of various research projects, inter alia, funded by the German Science Foundation, the EU Commission, the Fritz Thyssen Stiftung and the Stiftung Geld und Währung; Evaluator/reviewer of research programs/proposals for the EU Commission, the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) and the LOEWE (Initiative for the Development of Scientific and Economic Excellence, State of Hesse). She has published in The European Journal of Finance, Small Business Economics, the Journal of Financial Stability, the International Journal of Money and Finance, German Economic Review, Economics of Transition, the Journal of Comparative Economics, the Journal of Institutional and Theoretical Economics and many other journals. Schäfer gave expert testimonies for the Finance Committee of the Deutsche Bundestag, for the Committee on Social Affairs, Health and Sustainable Development, Parliamentary Assembly, The Council of Europe and for the Commission on the Financing of the Nuclear Phase-out. She was advisor to the Enquete Committee of Deutsche Bundestag, “Growth—Prosperity—Quality of Life” (Wachstum Wohlstand Lebensqualität) of the German Bundestag, Sub-Committee “Policy for a Sustainable Political and Economic Governance” (Nachhaltige Ordnungspolitik). In 2001 Schäfer and her co-author Franz Hubert received the Best Paper Award of the German Finance Association and 2002 the Best Paper Award of DIW Berlin. She is the editor-in-chief of “Vierteljahrshefte zur Wirtschaftsforschung”.
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Jönköping International Business School, Ratio Institute, and German Institute for Economic Research DIW Berlin

  • Andreas Stephan is professor of Economics and Finance at Jönköping International Business School in Sweden and at the Ratio Institute in Stockholm. He previously held positions at the Social Science Research Center Berlin (WZB), at the German Institute for Economic Research (DIW) and as a junior professor of economics at the European University Viadrina in Frankfurt/ Oder. He is affiliated with CESIS—Centre of Excellence for Science and Innovation Studies at the Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm, and with CeFEO—Centre for Family Enterprise and Ownership, Jönköping.
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Cited By

  1. Contemporary Developments in Entrepreneurial Finance

    Innovation and Investment Finance in Comparison

    Zimmermann, Volker

    2020 [Citations: 2]


This study examines the actual funding behavior of German innovative firms in the pre- and post-crisis period. Specifically, we investigate if and how the funding patterns and financial constraints of German small and medium enterprises (SME) changed during and since the financial crisis. The purpose of our analysis is to assess whether the aims of the European CMU action plan, funding innovation and investment activities, complements the behavior of German SMEs. We find fairly stable funding patterns over the years and there is no indication that financial constraints have become tighter in the post-crisis period. Consequently, realizing the CMU’s central goal of broadening the funding mix could leave the funding behavior of German SMEs largely unaffected.

Zusammenfassung: Diese Studie untersucht das aktuelle Finanzierungsverhalten deutscher innovativer Unternehmen vor und nach der Finanzkrise. Speziell untersuchen wir, ob sich die Finanzierungsstruktur und finanzielle Restriktionen der deutschen kleinen und mittleren Unternehmen (KMU) seit der Finanzkrise verändert haben. Der Zweck unserer Analyse ist es, zu beurteilen, ob die Ziele des europäischen CMU-Aktionsplans, insbesondere das Ziel der Förderung von Innovations- und Investitionstätigkeit, die Finanzierungssituation von deutschen KMU tatsächlich verbessern kann. Wir finden über den Untersuchungszeitraum hinweg stabile Finanzierungsstrukturen, und wir finden keine Evidenz, dass finanzielle Restriktionen nach der Krise zugenommen hätten. Vor diesem Hintergrund wird der CMU-Aktionsplan mit der Zielsetzung, den Finanzierungsmix von KMU zu erweitern, das aktuelle Finanzierungsverhalten deutscher KMU kaum beeinflussen.

JEL Classification: G32, G38, G01