nep-ino New Economics Papers
on Innovation
Issue of 2021‒01‒18
eleven papers chosen by
Uwe Cantner
University of Jena

  1. Demand Shocks, Procurement Policies, and the Nature of Medical Innovation: Evidence from Wartime Prosthetic Device Patents By Jeffrey P. Clemens; Parker Rogers
  2. Robots, AI, and Related Technologies: A Mapping of the New Knowledge Base By Enrico Santarelli; Jacopo Staccioli; Marco Vivarelli
  3. Roads to innovation: evidence from Italy By Bottasso, Anna; Conti, Maurizio; Robbiano, Simone; Santagata, Marta
  4. From knowledge-based catching up to valuation focused development: Emerging strategy shifts in the Chinese solar photovoltaic industry By Xiao-Shan Yap; Bernhard Truffer; Deyu Li; Gaston Heimeriks;
  5. Beyond Individualistic Behaviour: Social Norms and Innovation Adoption in Rural Mozambique By Luca Crudeli; Susanna Mancinelli; Massimiliano Mazzanti; Raul Pitoro
  6. Idea Diffusion and Property Rights By Boyan Jovanovic; Zhu Wang
  7. On the diffusion of mobile phone innovations for financial inclusion By Simplice A. Asongu; Nicholas Biekpe; Danny Cassimon
  8. Global systems of innovation: introductory notes on a new layer and a new hierarchy in innovation systems By Jorge Nogueira de Paiva Britto; Leonardo Costa Ribeiro; Eduardo da Motta e Albuquerque
  9. Anatomy of a techno-creative community : the role of places and events in the emergence of videomapping in Nantes By Etienne Capron; Dominique Sagot-Duvauroux; Raphaël Suire
  10. Bubbles and the Value of Innovation By Valentin Haddad; Paul Ho; Erik Loualiche
  11. The relative impact of private research on scientific advancement By Giovanni Abramo; Ciriaco Andrea D'Angelo; Flavia Di Costa

  1. By: Jeffrey P. Clemens; Parker Rogers
    Abstract: We analyze wartime prosthetic device patents to investigate how demand and procurement policy can shape medical innovation. We use machine learning tools to develop new data describing the aspects of medical and mechanical innovations that are emphasized in patent documents. Our analysis of historical patents yields three primary facts. First, we find that the U.S. Civil War and World War I led to substantial increases in the quantity of prosthetic device patenting relative to patenting in other medical and mechanical technology classes. Second, we find that the Civil War led inventors to focus broadly on improving aspects of the production process, while World War I did not, consistent with the United States applying a more cost-conscious procurement model during the Civil War. Third, we find that inventors emphasized dimensions of product quality (e.g., a prosthetic’s appearance or comfort) that aligned with differences in buyers’ preferences, as described in the historical record, across wars. We conclude that procurement environments can significantly shape the scientific problems with which inventors engage, including the choice to innovate on quality or cost.
    Keywords: procurement, medical innovation, health care, health economics
    JEL: H57 I10 O31
    Date: 2020
  2. By: Enrico Santarelli; Jacopo Staccioli; Marco Vivarelli
    Abstract: Using the entire population of USPTO patent applications published between 2002 and 2019, and leveraging on both patent classification and semantic analysis, this papers aims to map the current knowledge base centred on robotics and AI technologies. These technologies will be investigated both as a whole and distinguishing core and related innovations, along a 4-level core-periphery architecture. Merging patent applications with the Orbis IP firm-level database will allow us to put forward a threefold analysis based on industry of activity, geographic location, and firm productivity. In a nutshell, results show that: (i) rather than representing a technological revolution, the new knowledge base is strictly linked to the previous technological paradigm; (ii) the new knowledge base is characterised by a considerable - but not impressively widespread - degree of pervasiveness; (iii) robotics and AI are strictly related, converging (particularly among the related technologies) and jointly shaping a new knowledge base that should be considered as a whole, rather than consisting of two separate GPTs; (iv) the U.S. technological leadership turns out to be confirmed.
    Keywords: Robotics; Artificial Intelligence; General Purpose Technology; Technological Paradigm; Industry 4.0; Patents full-text.
    Date: 2021–01–11
  3. By: Bottasso, Anna; Conti, Maurizio; Robbiano, Simone; Santagata, Marta
    Abstract: In this study we leverage on the ancient Roman roads network as a source of exogenous variation in order to identify the causal effect of the modern highways network on innovation using Italian NUTS-3 regional data. Our results suggest that a 10 percent increase in the highways stock in a region causes an increase in the number of patents of about 2-3 percent over a five years period. We document that this positive effect on innovation might in part be explained by a reduction in travel costs that foster collaborations between inventors living in different regions. We also find that the innovation enhancing effect of highways declines over time, possibly because of the introduction of ICT, or the increasing congestion over the Italian network. Finally, we find also evidence of important heterogeneous treatment effects associated to region population density and we cannot rule out the existence of negative spillovers across regions, suggesting possible reorganization of innovative activity across space.
    Keywords: transport infrastructure; innovation; regional growth; policy evaluation
    JEL: L91 O33 O47 R11 R41
    Date: 2020–12–15
  4. By: Xiao-Shan Yap; Bernhard Truffer; Deyu Li; Gaston Heimeriks;
    Abstract: Recent research in catching-up and leapfrogging literature has been at pains to explain how latecomer countries, besides a few exceptional cases, could achieve leadership positions in global industries. We propose to extend the potential development strategies by drawing on recent insights at the interface between economic geography and socio-technical transition studies. Whereas the extant catch-up literature has strongly focused on conditions of knowledge development, we claim that processes of “valuation†and in particular the formation of new markets needs to be considered more explicitly. Drawing on recent developments in the Chinese solar photovoltaics industry, we show how companies in the country moved from a knowledge based catch-up strategy, to increasingly leading the innovation frontier of the PV sector. However the most promising leapfrogging opportunity only seems to take shape in the most recent phase, where market deployment and entrepreneurial experimentation increasingly target a transition of the electricity sector towards accommodating a high share of renewables. In a nutshell, the experience of the Chinese solar photovoltaics industry progressed from manufacturing PV cells, to climbing the value chain ladder, and finally towards the construction of entirely new socio-technical systems. We argue that this approach is increasingly necessary as sustainability requirements become more urgent and that other countries may learn in order to move out of the middle- income trap.
    Keywords: Catch-up; Leapfrog; Middle-income trap; Socio-technical systems; Knowledge; Unrelated diversification
    Date: 2020–12
  5. By: Luca Crudeli (Marine Market Systems); Susanna Mancinelli (University of Ferrara; SEEDS, Italy); Massimiliano Mazzanti (University of Ferrara; SEEDS, Italy); Raul Pitoro (Feed the Future Inova, Mozambique)
    Abstract: Development efforts to lift smallholder farmers out of poverty are often focused on promoting the adoption of new technologies that can improve yields, such as improved seeds, fertilizer, and chemicals. Two sets of drivers / obstacles must be considered when addressing innovation adoptions: economic and cultural and behavioural drivers. This paper focuses on both sets of drivers with special consideration of the second set, which is often overlooked during intervention design and execution. Using a dataset of observations from 300 smallholder farmers from rural Mozambique, this paper investigates the cultural and behavioural aspects that may facilitate or hinder the adoption of new farming technologies. The prevailing social norms that shape the behaviour of an ideal "good farmer" as defined by each of the investigated communities are explored, examining how these characteristics hinder or accelerate the diffusion of technological innovation. What emerges from the analysis is a social norm of good farmer extremely concerned about others. Moreover, this collectivistic image does not prevent a positive social perception of achieving above average farming results. The empirical analysis investigates the main drivers of Mozambican farmers’ innovation adoption, especially in the case of the most radical innovations, with particular attention given to analysing whether the collectivistic good farmer identity constitutes an obstacle to innovation. The results of various econometric analyse on intensity and adoption of innovations show that education, information, training and income level are structural drivers of radical innovation adoption and its intensity. Moreover, not only does the prosocial idea of good farmer not prevent farmers from undertaking innovative solutions but also has a significant impact on the adoption of the most radical solutions.
    Keywords: social norms, stigma, networking, good farmer, radical innovations, innovation intensity, rural Africa
    Date: 2021–01
  6. By: Boyan Jovanovic; Zhu Wang
    Abstract: We study the innovation and diffusion of technology at the industry level. We derive the full dynamic paths of an industry’s evolution, from birth to its maturity, and we characterize the impact of diffusion on the incentive to innovate. The model implies that protection of innovators should be only partial due to the congestion externality in meetings in which idea transfers take place. We fit the model to the early experiences of the automobile and personal computer industries both of which show an S-shaped growth of the number of firms.
    Keywords: Technology; Innovation
    Date: 2020–08–29
  7. By: Simplice A. Asongu (Yaounde, Cameroon); Nicholas Biekpe (University of Cape Town, Cape Town, South Africa.); Danny Cassimon (University of Antwerp, Belgium)
    Abstract: “Replications are an important part of the research process because they allow for greater confidence in the findings†(McEwan, Carpenter & Westerman, 2018, p. 235). This study extends Lashitew, van Tulder and Liasse (2019, RP) by addressing the concern of multicollinearity that affects the signs and significance of estimated coefficients. This article investigates nexuses between innovations in mobile money and financial inclusion in developing countries. Demand and supply factors that affect the diffusion of mobile services as well as macro-level institutional and economic factors are taken on board. The empirical evidence is based on Tobit regressions. The study finds that when the empirical analysis is robust to multicollinearity, two main tendencies are apparent: the significant findings of Lashitew et al. (2019) are confirmed and many new significant estimated coefficients emerge. While this study confirms the findings of the underlying research, it also goes further to improve the harmony in narratives between the predictors and the outcome variables. Accordingly, by accounting for multicollinearity, the earlier findings are now more consistent across the set of predictors (i.e. demand and supply factors) and the attendant financial inclusion outcomes (i.e. mobile money accounts, mobile used to send money and mobile used to receive money).
    Keywords: Mobile money; technology diffusion; financial inclusion; inclusive innovation
    JEL: D10 D14 D31 D60 O30
    Date: 2020–01
  8. By: Jorge Nogueira de Paiva Britto (Universidade Federal Fluminense); Leonardo Costa Ribeiro (Cedeplar/UFMG); Eduardo da Motta e Albuquerque (Cedeplar/UFMG)
    Abstract: This paper revisits the pioneers of innovation systems in the 1980s to evaluate their perception of international forces tensioning national boundaries of those systems. The development of multinational enterprises and consequent changes in their operation beyond national borders is discussed, looking at the formation of a network of international knowledge flows. Those changes are connected to the internationalization of science and consequent formation of another network of international knowledge flows. Both networks, one firm-led and the other university-led, are pushed by the revolutions in information and communication technologies. The combination, overlapping and intertwinement of those two networks of international knowledge flows constitute a new layer in innovation systems - an emergent global innovation system. This new layer rearranges the roles of regional, sectoral and national innovation systems.
    Keywords: innovation systems, international knowledge flows, layers of innovation systems
    JEL: O30
    Date: 2021–01
  9. By: Etienne Capron (GRANEM - Groupe de Recherche Angevin en Economie et Management - UA - Université d'Angers - AGROCAMPUS OUEST - Institut Agro - Institut national d'enseignement supérieur pour l'agriculture, l'alimentation et l'environnement - Institut National de l'Horticulture et du Paysage); Dominique Sagot-Duvauroux (GRANEM - Groupe de Recherche Angevin en Economie et Management - UA - Université d'Angers - AGROCAMPUS OUEST - Institut Agro - Institut national d'enseignement supérieur pour l'agriculture, l'alimentation et l'environnement - Institut National de l'Horticulture et du Paysage); Raphaël Suire (LEMNA - Laboratoire d'économie et de management de Nantes Atlantique - IEMN-IAE Nantes - Institut d'Économie et de Management de Nantes - Institut d'Administration des Entreprises - Nantes - UN - Université de Nantes - IUML - FR 3473 Institut universitaire Mer et Littoral - UBS - Université de Bretagne Sud - UM - Le Mans Université - UA - Université d'Angers - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - IFREMER - Institut Français de Recherche pour l'Exploitation de la Mer - UN - Université de Nantes - ECN - École Centrale de Nantes)
    Abstract: This article aims to study the role of places and events in the structuring of a community of innovation whose practice is at the crossroads of art and tech - videomapping. Based on an exploratory case study, we observe the relationships between the different actors who form subgroups, sharing a common interest in a techno-creative practice - but whose collective innovation dynamic is only in its beginnings. We also document the usage of places and events in their intermediation role for these subgroups. This reveals preferential circulations - patterns of moves among a set of focal locations in the city for a community – and the crucial role of these locations in creative communities emergence.
    Keywords: techno-creative innovation,places,knowledge,network analysis
    Date: 2020
  10. By: Valentin Haddad; Paul Ho; Erik Loualiche
    Abstract: Episodes of booming innovation coincide with intense speculation in financial markets leading to bubbles—increases in market valuations and firm creation followed by a crash. We provide a framework reproducing these facts that makes a rich set of predictions on how speculation changes both the private and social values of innovation. We confirm the theory in the universe of U.S. patents issued from 1926 through 2010. Measures based on financial market information indicate that speculation increases the private value of innovation and reduces negative spillovers to competing firms. No commensurate change occurs in measures grounded in real outcomes.
    Keywords: Bubbles; Innovation; patents
    Date: 2020–07–03
  11. By: Giovanni Abramo; Ciriaco Andrea D'Angelo; Flavia Di Costa
    Abstract: Literature about the scholarly impact of scientific research offers very few contributions on private sector research, and the comparison with public sector. In this work, we try to fill this gap examining the citation-based impact of Italian 2010-2017 publications distinguishing authorship by the private sector from the public sector. In particular, we investigate the relation between different forms of collaboration and impact: how intra-sector private publications compare to public, and how private-public joint publications compare to intra-sector extramural collaborations. Finally, we assess the different effect of international collaboration on private and public research impact, and whether there occur differences across research fields.
    Date: 2020–12

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