nep-ino New Economics Papers
on Innovation
Issue of 2019‒11‒18
nine papers chosen by
Uwe Cantner
University of Jena

  1. R&D and the American Corporation before World War II By Richard N. Langlois
  2. Concordance and Complementarity in IP Instruments By Marco Grazzi; Chiara Piccardo; Cecilia Vergari
  3. Knowledge Begets Knowledge: Knowledge Spillovers and the Output of Scientific Papers from U.S. Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Projects By Audretsch, David; Link, Albert; van Hasselt, Martijn
  4. On the Transfer of Technology from Universities: The Impact of the Bayh-Dole Act of 1980 on the Institutionalization of University Research By Link, Albert; van Hasselt, Martijn
  5. Innovation, Trade Policy, and Globalization By Ufuk Akcigit; Sina T. Ates; Giammario Impullitti
  6. Innovative Activity and Gender Dynamics By Bednar, Steven; Gicheva, Dora; Link, Albert
  7. The Speed of Innovation Diffusion in Social Networks By H Peyton Young; Itai Arieli; Yakov Babichenko; Ron Peretz
  8. “What’s the Point of the Task?” Exploring the Influence of Task Meaning on Creativity in Crowdsourcing By Thomas Görzen
  9. Do EU regions benefit from smart specialization? By David L. Rigby; Christoph Roesler; Dieter Kogler; Ron Boschma; Pierre-Alexandre Balland

  1. By: Richard N. Langlois (University of Connecticut)
    Abstract: This paper is an excerpt from a larger book project called The Corporation and the Twentieth Century, which chronicles and interprets the institutional and economic history – the life and times, if you will – of American business in the twentieth century. One integrating theme of the book is that the signal calamities of the Great Depression and World War II, as well as the policy responses to those calamities, are crucial in understanding the structure of American industry in the post-war world. This excerpt examines the role of research and development in the corporation before and during the Depression. It argues that, although corporate R&D labs did generate many important new technologies, innovations also flowed importantly from a large variety of other sources, both within the corporation (but outside of the research lab) and elsewhere in the economy. Even though corporate research did sometimes lead to new products for the corporation to exploit, a narrative in which internal R&D systematized innovation widely in the service of corporate diversification is on the whole a fable. Nonetheless, by destroying market-supporting institutions (including, importantly, sources of external finance) and by reducing the information content of price signals, the Depression did help solidify the nexus between R&D and the large corporation. Coupled with New Deal price and entry regulation in many sectors, and followed by the far greater extent of non-market controls during World War II, the Depression set the stage for the emergence of the large Chandlerian corporation of the post-war period.
    Keywords: Research and development; innovation; technological change; economic regulation; Great Depression; New Deal
    JEL: D23 L51 L52 L6 L9 N42 N62 N72 N82 O3 P12 P16
    Date: 2019–11
  2. By: Marco Grazzi; Chiara Piccardo; Cecilia Vergari
    Abstract: This work investigates the relationship between proxies of innovation activities, such as patents and trademarks, and firm performance in terms of revenues, growth and profitability. By resorting to the virtual universe of Italian manufacturing firms this work provides a rather complete picture of the Intellectual Property (IP) strategies pursued by Italian firms, in terms of patents and trademarks, and we study whether the two instruments for protecting IP exhibit complementarity or substitutability. In addition, and to our knowledge novel, we propose a measure of concordance (or proximity) between the patents and trademarks owned by the same firm and we then investigate whether such concordance exert any effect on performance.
    Keywords: Trademarks, Patents, Innovation, Intellectual Property, Complementarity, Concordance, Technological proximity, firm performance, firm growth, firm performance, firm growth
    Date: 2019–11
  3. By: Audretsch, David (Indiana University); Link, Albert (University of North Carolina at Greensboro, Department of Economics); van Hasselt, Martijn (University of North Carolina at Greensboro, Department of Economics)
    Abstract: Scientific papers submitted for publication from U.S. Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR)-funded research projects are an innovative output that has yet to be studied systematically. Using a knowledge production framework, we identify empirically covariates with the number of scientific papers resulting from SBIR projects over the period 1992 through 2001. We find empirically that when the firm involves a university in its funded project, more scientific papers result. When the form of university involvement is taken into account, we find the greatest impact on the output of scientific papers comes from the inclusion of an individual from the university who originally developed the technology being pursued by the firm in its SBIR project. In other words, the project-specific technical human capital knowledge from the university that spills over to the firm's projects begets (i.e., brings about) additional knowledge in the form of scientific papers submitted for publication.
    Keywords: innovative; technology; scientific publications; R&D; university knowledge spillovers; Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program; patents;
    JEL: J24 O31 O33 O38
    Date: 2019–09–30
  4. By: Link, Albert (University of North Carolina at Greensboro, Department of Economics); van Hasselt, Martijn (University of North Carolina at Greensboro, Department of Economics)
    Abstract: While the academic and policy literature has focused on patent counts and patent quality as possible outcome measures to evaluate the impact of the U.S. Bayh-Dole Act of 1980, we argue that the impact of the Act on University effort to transfer its technology to the private sector might be seen more accurately by examining the trend in the initial establishment of technology transfer offices (TTOs). Using an econometric framework to identify the presence of multiple structural breaks in data on the annual number of university TTOs, we find multiple break dates over the period 1925 to 2014. One break date was in the late-1960s and a second break date occurred about 1982. We suggest, in contrast to previous findings in the literature, that the Act did have an impact on the formal internal transfer of technology from universities through patenting by providing an incentive for universities to invest in a TTO research infrastructure. We also suggest that our empirical methodology is applicable to an assessment of the impact of legislation similar to the Bayh-Dole Act in the many countries with such legislation.
    Keywords: Bayh-Dole; technology transfer; patenting; structural change;
    JEL: C22 C24 O33 O38
    Date: 2019–08–14
  5. By: Ufuk Akcigit; Sina T. Ates; Giammario Impullitti
    Abstract: This note examines the optimal mix of tariff policies and R&D subsidies to support domestic firms in global technological competition and to enhance aggregate welfare.
    Date: 2019–09–30
  6. By: Bednar, Steven (Elon University); Gicheva, Dora (University of North Carolina at Greensboro, Department of Economics); Link, Albert (University of North Carolina at Greensboro, Department of Economics)
    Abstract: We explore the innovative performance of firms resulting from their Phase II Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) research-funded projects in terms of the gender dynamics of the firms. Using commercialization as the relevant performance metric, we find that Phase II projects led by a female principal investigator (PI) have greater probability of being commercialized in female-owned firms than in male-owned firms. This result is consistent with the findings from other settings that females tend to perform better when working under a female supervisor.
    Keywords: innovation; SBIR program; gender gap; principle investigator;
    JEL: J16 O31 O38
    Date: 2019–09–15
  7. By: H Peyton Young; Itai Arieli; Yakov Babichenko; Ron Peretz
    Abstract: New ways of doing things often get started through the actions of a few innovators, then diffuse rapidly as more and more people come into contact with prior adopters in their social network. Much of the literature focuses on the speed of diffusion as a function of the network topology. In practice the topology may not be known with any precision, and it is constantly in flux as links are formed and severed. Here we establish an upper bound on the expected waiting time until a given proportion of the population has adopted that holds independently of the network structure. Kreindler and Young [38, 2014] demonstrated such a bound for regular networks when agents choose between two options: the innovation and the status quo. Our bound holds for directed and undirected networks of arbitrary size and degree distribution, and for multiple competing innovations with different payoffs.
    Date: 2019–11–04
  8. By: Thomas Görzen (University of Paderborn)
    Abstract: In pursuit of product innovation, companies increasingly use crowdsourcing for idea generation. Apart from financial motives, previous studies on the motivation of crowd workers identified intrinsic motivation, such as task meaningfulness, to play a key role. These studies, however, focused on routine tasks such as image labelling, using output quantity as the variable of interest. Since the primary goal for a creative task such as idea generation is not abundance but high quality, we investigate the influence of task meaning on workers’ effort and on output creativity. In a field experiment involving idea generation by an online crowdsourcing platform, we vary the task meaning in two different conditions, and evaluate the quality of the ideas generated. We find that higher task meaning has no positive influence on either the quantity or the creativity of the output, which carries practical implications for both commissioners and crowdsourcing platform designers.\\
    Keywords: crowd working, task meaning, creativity, crowdsourcing
    JEL: L86 C93 M55 O32
    Date: 2019–06
  9. By: David L. Rigby; Christoph Roesler; Dieter Kogler; Ron Boschma; Pierre-Alexandre Balland
    Abstract: Smart specialization was conceived as a “bottom-up†framework to identify new growth paths connected to the existing knowledge cores of regions. Operationalization of smart specialization has proven difficult, though a recent “mapping†of technologies in terms of knowledge relatedness and complexity suggests a useful cost-benefit framework. We extend these ideas, locating EU cities in a smart specialization space and tracking their development of alternative technologies over the period 1981 to 2015. Panel models show employment growth and GDP growth are faster in cities that exhibit a logic of technological development consistent with the tenets of smart specialization.
    Keywords: smart specialization, policy, complexity, technological relatedness, European Union
    JEL: O25 O38 R11
    Date: 2019–11

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