nep-ino New Economics Papers
on Innovation
Issue of 2009‒03‒07
seven papers chosen by
Steffen Lippert
Massey University Department of Commerce

  1. Innovation and Institutional Ownership By Philippe Aghion; John Van Reenen; Luigi Zingales
  2. Innovation and Equilibrium? By Martin Shubik
  3. The Effect of Credit Rationing on the Shape of the Competition-Innovation Relationship By Jan Bena
  4. The R&D Process in the U.S. and Japan: Major findings from the RIETI-Georgia Tech inventor survey By NAGAOKA Sadao; John P. WALSH
  5. The business of product innovation : international empirical evidence By Lederman, Daniel
  6. Direction and Intensity of Technical Change: a Micro Model By Luca Zamparelli
  7. Commercialization and Other Uses of Patents in Japan and the U.S.: Major findings from the RIETI-Georgia Tech inventor survey By MOTOHASHI Kazuyuki; YUAN Yuan

  1. By: Philippe Aghion; John Van Reenen; Luigi Zingales
    Abstract: We find that institutional ownership in publicly traded companies is associated with more innovation (measured by cite-weighted patents). To explore the mechanism through which this link arises, we build a model that nests the lazy-manager hypothesis with career-concerns, where institutional owners increase managerial incentives to innovate by reducing the career risk of risky projects. The data supports the career concerns model. First, whereas the lazy manager hypothesis predicts a substitution effect between institutional ownership and product market competition (and managerial entrenchment generally), the career-concern model allows for complementarity. Empirically, we reject substitution effects. Second, CEOs are less likely to be fired in the face of profit downturns when institutional ownership is higher. Finally, using instrumental variables, policy changes and disaggregating by type of owner we find that the effect of institutions on innovation does not appear to be due to endogenous selection.
    JEL: G20 G32 O31 O32 O33
    Date: 2009–03
  2. By: Martin Shubik
    Date: 2009–02–27
  3. By: Jan Bena
    Abstract: Using a dynamic model of a step-by-step innovation race between financially constrained firms, I study how financial constraints affect innovation activity. The novel theoretical results derive from an analysis of the interaction between the incentive effect of competition on innovation and the effect competition has on the degree of credit rationing. I find that the negative effect of financial constraints on firm- and aggregate-level R&D investment is most pronounced at both high and low levels of competition. These predictions are supported by empirical evidence: The competition-innovation relationship has an inverted-U shape in less financially developed systems relative to the benchmark pattern observed in countries with highly developed financial systems. Innovation-enhancing policies implemented through competition reforms ought to be complemented by promoting financial development.
    Keywords: Innovation, R&D, Competition, Financial constraints, Credit rationing.
    JEL: G15 G31 L13 O31
    Date: 2008–12
  4. By: NAGAOKA Sadao; John P. WALSH
    Abstract: This paper analyzes and compares the objective, the nature and the performance of R&D projects in the US and Japan, based on the first large scale systematic survey of inventors, focusing on the R&D projects yielding triadic patents. Major findings are the following. First, the projects for enhancing the existing business line of a firm account for a large share of R&D projects in both countries, confirming the view that the R&D investment is significantly conditioned by the existing complementary asset of a firm. In both countries, the inventions from R&D for existing business have the highest in-house utilization rate but use least the scientific and technical literature for their conceptions, while the reverse is the case for the inventions from R&D for new technology base (or for cultivating seeds). R&D projects for enhancing the technology base are much more common in the US. This difference can be partly accounted for by US inventors being more likely to have a PhD, but not by the differences in the structure of finance. US government financial support is relatively more targeted to projects for existing business and US venture capital provides support mainly projects for creating new business (6% of them), but not for more upstream projects. Only about 20-30% of the projects are for process innovation in both countries, providing direct evidence for the earlier findings that were based on US patent information. Product innovation generates process patents more often in Japan than in the US (25% vs. 10%), while product innovation projects are relatively more numerous in Japan. In both countries a significant share of inventions (more than 20%) were not the result of an R&D project, and a substantial proportion of such inventions are valued among the top 10% of patents, suggesting that R&D expenditure significantly underestimates inventive activities. A US invention is more often an unexpected by-product of an R&D project (11%) than in Japan (3.4%). The two countries have surprisingly similar distributions of R&D projects in man month and the average team size. In both countries, smaller firms tend to have relatively more high-value patents. In the US, inventors from very small firms (with less than 100 employees) and universities jointly account for more than one quarter of the top 10% inventions, even though they account for only 14% of all inventions. Man-months expended for an invention has a significant correlation with the performance of the R&D projects for existing business, less so for new business and not at all for those enhancing the technology base, suggesting substantial heterogeneity by project types in the determinants of the performance and in the uncertainty. A PhD has a significant correlation with R&D project performance especially for new business.
    Date: 2009–02
  5. By: Lederman, Daniel
    Abstract: It is so widely recognized that innovation is a key driver of economic growth that it is cliché to say so. This article studies product innovation by firms with data from 68 countries, covering more than 25,000 firms in eight manufacturing sectors. The author assesses the predictions of inter-disciplinary research on innovation by firms. The econometric evidence suggests that globalization and local knowledge increase the likelihood that firms will introduce new products. By contrast, domestic regulatory impediments to competition are not robustly correlated with product innovation.
    Keywords: E-Business,Innovation,Microfinance,Education for Development (superceded),Statistical&Mathematical Sciences
    Date: 2009–02–01
  6. By: Luca Zamparelli
    Abstract: This paper develops a growth model combining elements of endogenous growth and induced innovation literatures. In a standard induced innovation model firms select at no cost innovations from an innovation possibilities frontier describing the trade-off between increasing capital or labor productivity. The model proposed allows firms to choose not only the direction but also the size of innovation by representing the innovation possibilities through a cost function of capital and labor augmenting innovations. By so doing, it provides a micro-foundation both of the intensity and of the direction of technical change. The policy analysis implies that an increase in subsidies to R&D as opposed to capital accumulation raises per capita steady state growth, employment rate and wage share.
    Keywords: Induced innovation, endogenous growth, direction of technical change
    JEL: O31 O33 O40
    Date: 2009–02
  7. By: MOTOHASHI Kazuyuki; YUAN Yuan
    Abstract: Based on the newly implemented inventor survey in Japan and the U.S., we have examined the commercialization and other uses of triadic patents. Although the two countries have a similar overall level of commercialization (60% of the triadic patents), the structure is different: in Japan, we see a higher incidence of in-house use relative to the overall level of commercialization, more inventions being licensed and less used for startups. We also see more multiple uses(in-house and license/startup) in Japan. In both countries licensing plays a relatively important role for commercializing the inventions from R&D targeted to new business and to enhancing the technology base. Consistently, licensing becomes more important as a patenting reason as the invention involves more scientific knowledge. The key difference in startups between the two countries is a high incidence of the inventions of university researchers being used for startups in the U.S. (35%). In both countries strategic holding (use of the patents for blocking and the prevention of inventing around) is one of the major reasons of non-commercialized patents. Only 20% of the internally commercialized patents can be used on a stand-alone basis in both countries, and both the incidence of cross-license conditional on license and the incidence of license itself tend to increase with the size of the bundle of the patents to be jointly used with that invention. As appropriation measures, the first mover advantage(FMA)in commercialization and the FMA in R&D are the most important in both countries, while the latter becomes more important as the invention involves more scientific knowledge. The U.S. inventors rank patent enforcement significantly higher than possessing complementary capabilities, while the reverse is the case for Japanese inventors. In addition, enhancing the exclusive exploitation of the invention is a more important patenting reason in the U.S. The fact that the commercialization rate of patented inventions is quite similar between the two countries despite of the significant difference of the appreciation of exclusivity indicates that exclusivity may promote exploitation in certain areas and retard it in others. Finally, non-conventional patenting reasons are also important in both countries: blocking and pure defense are at least as important as licensing, and corporate reputation is an important reason for patenting by small firms.
    Date: 2009–02

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