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Does State-level Upgrade of High-tech Zones Promote Urban Innovation Efficiency: Evidence from China

Qiong Wang (), Ru Yang (), Ruyue Zhao () and Chengyuan Wang ()
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Qiong Wang: School of Economics, Hefei University of Technology, Hefei 230601, China
Ru Yang: School of Economics, Hefei University of Technology, Hefei 230601, China
Ruyue Zhao: Hangzhou Branch, China Merchants Bank, Hangzhou 310007, China
Chengyuan Wang: School of Management, University of Science and Technology of China, Hefei 230026, China

Sustainability, 2019, vol. 11, issue 21, 1-14

Abstract: Among China’s existing state-level High-tech Industry Development Zones (HIDZ), the number of upgraded ones account for more than 65%, which are supposed to fulfill the important mission of leading innovation. However, while the upgraded state-level HIDZ enjoy more opportunities than before, they also face major challenges such as the significant inter-generational differences between them and the born state-level HIDZ. Based on the panel data of Chinese (prefecture-level) cities from 2007 to 2015, the paper empirically examines the impact of the state-level upgrade of HIDZ on urban innovation efficiency by using a difference-in-differences propensity score matching approach (PSM-DID). The results show that the upgraded state-level HIDZ has significantly improved urban innovation efficiency, and this positive effect has gradually increased with the implementation of the upgrade policy. The further heterogeneity analysis shows that the higher the scientific research level of higher education institutions in the cities, the greater the promotion effect of the state-level upgrade. The paper evaluates the policy effect of the upgraded state-level HIDZ from their stated mission, which is a powerful complement to the existing research and provides more effective guidance for policy-makers.

Keywords: China; upgraded state-level HIDZ; urban innovation efficiency; PSM-DID (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: Q Q0 Q2 Q3 Q5 Q56 O13 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2019
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