nep-ipr New Economics Papers
on Intelectual Property Rights
Issue of 2006‒11‒04
ten papers chosen by
Roland Kirstein
Otto von Guericke University, Magdeburg

  1. Modeling the Duration of Patent Examination at the European Patent Office By Dietmar Harhoff; Stefan Wagner
  2. University Patenting: Estimating the Diminishing Breadth of Knowledge Diffusion and Consumption By Carlos Rosell; Ajay Agrawal
  3. The Keins Database on Academic Inventors: Methodology and Contents By Francesco Lissoni; Bulat Sanditov; Gianluca Tarasconi
  4. Technology Transfers and the Clean Development Mechanism in a North-South General Equilibrium Model By Aronsson, Thomas; Backlund, Kenneth; Sahlén, Linda
  5. Knowledge Transfer Trough Job Mobility: Evidence from a Survey of Italian Inventors By Camilla Lenzi
  6. The Dye Famine and its Aftermath: Knowledge Diffusion and Entry By Genesove, David
  7. You Cannot be Serious: The Conceptual Innovator as Trickster By David Galenson
  8. Tariffs and the Adoption of Clean Technology Under Asymmetric Information By Rodney Ludema; Taizo Takeno
  9. Buyer Commitment and Opportunism in the Online Market for IT Services By Radkevitch, U.; Heck, E. van; Koppius, O.
  10. Information Processing, Learning and Analogy-based Expectation: an Experiment By Steffen Huck; Philippe Jehiel; Tom Rutter

  1. By: Dietmar Harhoff (Munich School of Management, LMU München); Stefan Wagner (Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR), London)
    Abstract: We analyze the duration of the patent examination process at the European Patent Office (EPO). Our data contain information related to the patent’s economic and technical relevance, EPO capacity and workload as well as novel citation measures which are derived from the EPO’s search reports. In our multivariate analysis we estimate competing risk specifications in order to characterize differences in the processes leading to a withdrawal of the application by the applicant, a refusal of the patent grant by the examiner or an actual patent grant. Highly cited applications are approved faster by the EPO than less important ones, but they are also withdrawn less quickly by the applicant. The process duration increases for all outcomes with the application’s complexity, originality, number of references (backward citations) in the search report and with the EPO’s workload at the filing date. Endogenous applicant behavior becomes apparent in other results: more controversial claims lead to slower grants, but faster withdrawals, while relatively well-documented applications (identified by a high share of applicant references appearing in the search report) are approved faster and take longer to be withdrawn.
    Keywords: patents, patent examination, survival analysis, patent citations, European Patent Office
    JEL: C15 C41 D73 O34
    Date: 2006–10
  2. By: Carlos Rosell; Ajay Agrawal
    Abstract: The rate of university patenting increased dramatically during the 1980s. To what extent did the knowledge flow patterns associated with public sector inventions change as university administrators and faculty seemingly became more commercially oriented? Using a Herfindahl-type measure of patent assignee concentration and employing a difference-in-differences estimation to compare university to firm patents across two time periods, we find that the university diffusion premium (the degree to which knowledge flows from patented university inventions are more widely distributed across assignees than those of firms) declined by over half during the 1980s. In addition, we find that the university diversity premium (the degree to which knowledge inflows used to develop patented university inventions are drawn from a less concentrated set of prior art holders than those used by firms) also declined by over half. Moreover, in both cases the estimated increase in knowledge flow concentration is largely driven by universities experienced in patenting, suggesting these phenomena are not likely to dissipate with experience.
    JEL: I23 O33 O34
    Date: 2006–10
  3. By: Francesco Lissoni (University of Brescia and CESPRI-Bocconi University,Italy.); Bulat Sanditov (CESPRI-Bocconi University, Italy and MERIT-Maastricht University, The Netherlands.); Gianluca Tarasconi (CESPRI-Bocconi University, Milan, Italy.)
    Abstract: The paper describes the methodogy used to build a database on academic inventors from France, Italy, and Sweden (1978-2004), which was delivered to the European Commission as part of the KEINS project (Knowledge-Based Entrepreneurship: Innovation, Networks and Systems), and will provide the basis for future publications. It provides an overview of the database contents, as well as information on access rules and on related datasets by CESPRI-Università Bocconi. The database is the result of joint efforts by CESPRI-Università Bocconi (Milan, IT), BETA – Universitè “Louis Pasteur” (Strasbourg, FR), IMIT-Chalmers University (Gotheborg, SE), Umea Universitet (SE), and Università degli studi di Brescia (IT).
    Keywords: University patents, European universities, Patent database.
    JEL: C81 I23 O34
    Date: 2006–09
  4. By: Aronsson, Thomas (Department of Economics, Umeå University); Backlund, Kenneth (Department of Economics, Umeå University); Sahlén, Linda (Department of Economics, Umeå University)
    Abstract: This paper analyzes the potential welfare gains of introducing a technology transfer from Annex I to non-Annex I in order to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions. Our analysis is based on a numerical general equilibrium model for a world economy comprising two regions, North (Annex I) and South (non-Annex I). As our model allows for labor mobility between the formal and informal sectors in the South, we are also able to capture additional aspects of how the transfer influences the Southern economy. In a cooperative equilibrium, a technology transfer from the North to the South is clearly desirable from the perspective of a ‘global social planner’, since the welfare gain for the South outweighs the welfare loss for the North. However, if the regions do not cooperate, then the incentives to introduce the technology transfer appear to be relatively weak from the perspective of the North; at least if we allow for Southern abatement in the pre-transfer Nash equilibrium. Finally, by adding the emission reductions associated with the Kyoto agreement to an otherwise uncontrolled market economy, the technology transfer leads to higher welfare in both regions.
    Keywords: Climate policy; technology transfer; Kyoto protocol; general equilibrium; clean development mechanism
    JEL: D58 D62 Q52
    Date: 2006–11–01
  5. By: Camilla Lenzi (CESPRI-Bocconi University, Milano,Italy.)
    Abstract: Knowledge transfer issues are of great interest in researchers and policy makers agenda because of its implications in terms of innovation diffusion and economic welfare. Among the others, workers’ mobility, namely highly skilled ones, is considered as one of the most influential channels for knowledge transmission. This paper examines the patterns of mobility of a group of Italian inventors in the pharmaceutical sector. New empirical evidence is discussed and results of the analysis support the idea that workers’ mobility is an important mechanism of valuable knowledge diffusion. Moreover, the paper critically discusses methodological issues concerning measures of inventors’ mobility through patent statistics.
    Keywords: Knowledge transfer, Mobility, Inventor, Productivity.
    JEL: J60 O30
    Date: 2006–10
  6. By: Genesove, David
    Abstract: A firm that introduces a new good enjoys monopoly profits for some initial period of time. What happens subsequently depends upon the relative strength of knowledge diffusion and increasing dominance. The first effect enhances challengers’ ability to develop the product, erodes the incumbent’s monopoly power, while the second, which concerns the relative net cost of the incumbent to challengers in production, strengthens it. This paper exploits the near total disruption of imports of German dyes to the United States during World War I and the immediate post-War period, and the subsequent re-entry of the Germans to the market, to separately estimate the first effect. The results show that while (a) the probability of a dye was imported in 1913-1914 bore no relation to its year of discovery, (b) the probability it was produced in 1917 by the new American manufacturers was greater by one and a half percent per year, the earlier the year of discovery. Coupled with the estimated semi-elasticity of the probability of production with respect to the volume of imports in 1914, and assuming prospective profits were proportional to that volume, one obtains that every additional year since discovery decreased the expected cost of developing the dye by 19 to 25%. The paper shows, additionally, that after German imports were able to resume, the probability of a dye being imported in 1923, given that the Americans were already producing it, was independent of the year of discovery – implying that the discovery year is an appropriate proxy for the amount of development relevant knowledge that had diffused through the industry.
    Keywords: dyes; increasing dominance; innovation; knowledge diffusion
    JEL: L65 O31 O33
    Date: 2006–10
  7. By: David Galenson
    Abstract: In 1917, when the American Society of Independent Artists refused to exhibit a porcelain urinal that Marcel Duchamp had submitted to them as a sculpture, a friend of Duchamp's wrote : "There are those who anxiously ask: 'Is he serious or is he joking?' Perhaps he is both!" Duchamp's behavior - making a provocative and radically innovative artistic gesture, then declining to explain his motives in the face of accusations that this was a hoax - became a model that subsequently inspired a series of iconoclastic young conceptual innovators. These include many of the most important artists of the twentieth century, and their line of descent runs from Joseph Beuys, Andy Warhol, Yves Klein, and Piero Manzoni to Gilbert & George, Jeff Koons, Tracey Emin and Damien Hirst. The ambiguity of these artists' actions has triggered heated and persistent debates over the sincerity of their work, which have increased the effectiveness of the work's attacks on existing artistic conventions at the same time that they have advanced the artists' reputations and careers. The model of the conceptual artist as trickster is a novel feature of the innovative conceptual art of the past century, and it has produced a type of conceptual art that is more personal than nearly all other forms of art: we can never look at their work without thinking not only of their ideas - what is the artistic significance of a manufactured object purchased at a hardware store, or a silkscreen of a photograph taken from a magazine - but also of their attitudes - was Fountain or Fat Chair really intended to be taken seriously?
    Date: 2006–10
  8. By: Rodney Ludema; Taizo Takeno (Department of Economics, Georgetown University)
    Abstract: This paper examines the effect of import tariffs on the decision of a foreign monopolist to adopt “clean” technology – technology that reduces the flow of a negative cross-border externality per unit of exports. The clean technology is assumed to increase the marginal cost of production relative to the dirty technology, but only the firm knows the extent of the increase. Under complete information, we show that, despite its protectionist motivation, the importing country’s optimal tariff induces the firm to adopt the clean technology if and only if it is globally efficient to do so. Under incomplete information, this efficiency property is disrupted. If the optimal tariff is decreasing in the marginal cost, then it leads the firm to bias its choice in favor of dirty technology. Classification-JEL Codes: F13, F18
  9. By: Radkevitch, U.; Heck, E. van; Koppius, O. (Erasmus Research Institute of Management (ERIM), RSM Erasmus University)
    Abstract: Companies increasingly outsource IT-related tasks using reverse auction mechanisms embedded into online marketplaces. However, a considerable proportion of auctions at these marketplaces do not result in a contract between buyer and supplier. Extant literature mostly refers to costly bidding and bid evaluation to explain this phenomenon. Another possible explanation is that because of the low entry barriers, buyers with a low commitment to exchange can use the marketplace solely for information gath-ering purposes such as price benchmarking and obtaining free consultations, having little or no intention to contract a supplier. We test this explanation by looking at how different types of costs incurred by the buyer during the sourcing process, are related to the outcome of reverse auctions in terms of contract award. We argue that higher levels of search, preparation and negotiation costs are associated with higher commitment to exchange and find that opportunistic behaviour does indeed play a part in the non-contracted projects, while committed buyers are more likely to enter into a contract with a supplier. The hypotheses are tested on a sample of 2,574 reverse auctions at a leading online marketplace for IT services and further verified across projects of different value and different levels of buyer experience. On the practical side, we recommend setting up entry barriers for buyers with a low level of commitment.
    Keywords: Reverse Auctions;Online Markets;IT Outsourcing;Opportunism;Transaction Costs;
    Date: 2006–10–30
  10. By: Steffen Huck; Philippe Jehiel; Tom Rutter
    Date: 2006–10–27

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