3/30/2010 3:00:00 PM
Changes to the questionnaire for the fifth follow-up of the Kauffman Firm Survey (KFS)
have been finalized following an open solicitation for suggestions, as well as expert feedback and vetting. The KFS, our eight-year panel survey on new businesses started in 2004, will gather data in 2010 (on the 2009 activities of the businesses), and will be available to the research community in the spring 2011.
Most of the changes this year are attempts to gather additional details on innovation activities of the businesses in the panel. Suggestions in this arena came from colleagues in Germany at ZEW who are collecting data on German start-ups as part of the KfW/ZEW Start-up Panel, scholars looking at user innovation, and also scholars studying competitive advantage. Also in the area of innovation, we are expanding the question we asked last year on investments in intangible assets to disaggregate firm-level investments by type.
Besides innovation, we have added several questions in the finance area. Given the recent financial crisis and subsequent changing terms of credit for many small businesses, we are trying to get information on collateral required for loans as well as attempts to seek equity investments. We already have data on attempts to seek debt investments. These are questions I wish we'd been asking before the current crisis but hindsight is always more clear.
This will likely be the last time we make changes to the Kauffman Firm Survey questionnaire since there are only two additional years of collection left. We were very pleased to receive so many quality suggestions from scholars this year.