In many countries, governments are developing and implementing various mechanisms to incentivize innovative research and development. There is a new mechanism recently announced by the German Ministry of Finance. Starting in Jan 01, 2020, research organizations will be able to receive financial support of up to 25% of taxes paid on salaries to employees in Germany. For some organizations, this can be a significant help.
There are similarly minded incentives in other countries where such tax reductions can be granted to organizations that conduct research of “sufficient quality” (e.g. the French regulation called Crédit d’Impôt Recherche).
Importantly, and to the best of our knowledge, there is no definition of what such “sufficient quality” means and whether it has even been challenged.
In the new German regulation, based on the R&D definition given, one of the eligibility criteria to receive support is that the research conducted should lead to results that can be reproduced. There is no further definition provided and it may well be that, at least in the beginning, this criterion will be neglected.
However, one should view such examples set by the law makers as a clear signal that there may be strong incentives in the future to motivate research organizations to argue and prove that the generated data sets are robust and reproducible.