Cihan Okur

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Department of Systems Engineering and Management

First Advisor

Alfred E. Thal, Jr., PhD.


Generally, the purpose of defense research and development (R&D) is to expand military capability for the armed forces of a country. Any spin-off of technologies from defense R&D programs is usually not a prime motivation but more often an unintended consequence. Nevertheless, many of the technologies used in civilian life were initially research and development projects for military purposes. These technologies eventually become adapted to civilian applications since they had beneficial economic and social ''spillover'' effects. However, there is a lack of research measuring the final outputs of defense R&D, including technology ''spin-offs.'' This study mainly tried to understand the effect of defense R&D expenditures on military capability and technological spillover. Statistical measures such as correlations were used to understand these effects. The study revealed that there is a highly positive correlation between defense R&D expenditure and military capability, as well as between defense R&D expenditure and technological spillover index. The study contributed to the academic literature in three ways by providing: new measures of military capability, a new estimation method for defense R&D expenditures, and a new method to measure technological spillover effect from defense R&D expenditures.

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