Based on the sample of A-share listed companies in China from 2008 to 2017, this paper studies the relationship between executives’ academic experience and R&D manipulation. The results show that:（1）Executives’ academic experience is significantly negatively correlated with the level of R&D manipulation, indicating that executives’ academic experience can significantly inhibit the R&D manipulation activities of enterprises;（2）When the tax enforcement in the region where enterprises are located is weak or the quality of internal control of enterprises is poor, executives with academic experience have a more significant effect on R&D manipulation;（3）Further research on the economic consequences finds that executives’ academic experience can enhance the efficiency of enterprise innovation by weakening the level of R&D manipulation.
This paper may have the following contributions: Firstly, it expands the governance role that influences R&D manipulation from the perspective of the professional background of executives. Most of the existing studies have explored the governance subjects of R&D manipulation from the external level of enterprises, such as auditors and institutional investors, while ignoring the elements of internal governance. In this paper, the perspective of governance is locked in the level of corporate executives to provide a supplement to the existing research. Secondly, it enriches the research on the economic consequences of executives’ academic experience from the perspective of R&D manipulation. The existing research lacks the discussion on the governance effect of executives’ academic experience from the perspective of improper behavior in business activities. This paper chooses the perspective of R&D manipulation and investigates the complementary effect of the academic experience of senior managers and the internal and external governance environment, aiming to deepen the research on executives’ academic experience at the theoretical level. Thirdly, from the perspective of innovation efficiency, it further examines whether executives’ academic experience can bring a positive influence to enterprises after restraining the R&D manipulation of enterprises, provides new ideas for the path research of improving the level of enterprise innovation by executives’ academic experience, and provides a theoretical basis for how to effectively improve the quality of enterprise innovation. Fourthly, it provides micro-enterprise-level empirical evidence for the government to speed up the reform of the talent development mechanism, promote the transformation of scientific and technological achievements, and stimulate the vitality of innovation and entrepreneurship. This paper examines the governance effect of executives’ academic experience with R&D manipulation, a micro economic behavior, and provides theoretical support for China’s policies to support scientific researchers’ entrepreneurship or equity participation.