nep-ipr New Economics Papers
on Intellectual Property Rights
Issue of 2008‒05‒05
eight papers chosen by
Roland Kirstein
Otto von Guericke University Magdeburg

  1. The EU Framework Programs: Are they worth doing? By Dekker, Ronald; kleinknecht, A.H.
  2. A resource-based view on the interactions of university researchers By Frank J. van Rijnsoever; Laurens K. Hessels; Rens L.J. Vandeberg
  3. The IPR System, Venture Capital and Capital Markets – Contributions and Distortions of Small Firm Innovation? By Jesper Lindgaard Christensen
  4. Field-of-use restrictions in licensing agreements By Schuett, Florian
  5. Stimulating Renewable Energy Technologies by Innovation policy By Simona O. Negro; Marko P. Hekkert; Ruud Smits
  6. Inventors and the Geographical Breadth of Knowledge Spillovers By Paola Giuri; Myriam Mariani
  7. The R&D Investment-Uncertainty Relationship: Do Competition and Firm Size Matter? By Czarnitzki, Dirk; Toole, Andrew A.
  8. Polarization of the Swedish Universtiy Sector: Structural Characteristics and Positioning By Daniel Ljungberg; Mattias Johansson; Maureen McKelvey

  1. By: Dekker, Ronald; kleinknecht, A.H.
    Abstract: Using CIS data from the Netherlands, Germany and France we test whether EU Framework programs do have effects on their participants' R&D input and innovative output. From our Heckman selection equations, we conclude that the FPs attract the "elite" of European innovators. The question is whether, after correction for self-selection, the programs have positive effects on innovative behaviour. This is hard to test meaningfully among large firms as EU funding is likely to cover only a minor share of their innovative activities. Analysing changes in R&D input we find that smaller firms increase their R&D input quite substantially after entering an EU FP program. Estimating equations that explain sales of innovative products, we find that firms that collaborate on R&D with clients, suppliers, competitors or public research institutes do not have increased sales of innovative products. We try to provide explanations for this counter-intuitive finding. Moreover, participation in an EU FP neither increases sales of innovative products. This result holds after numerous robustness checks. We argue that our insignificant outcomes do not necessarily imply that the FP programs are worthless. There is independent evidence that innovative projects funded by the EU FPs do, on average, involve more technical and scientific risks, they are more complex, and involve longer time horizons. Obviously, they are farer from market introduction which is not surprising, given the regulatory demand that EU FPs should be "pre-competitive". Against this background, we cannot exclude the possibility that an insignificant coefficient of FP participation in our equation on innovative output may still have a positive meaning.
    Keywords: innovation; R&D subsidies; collaborative R&D; CIS data; Netherlands; Germany; France
    JEL: O38 O57 O32 O31
    Date: 2008–05–22
  2. By: Frank J. van Rijnsoever; Laurens K. Hessels; Rens L.J. Vandeberg
    Abstract: The high value of collaboration among scientists and of interactions of university researchers with industry is generally acknowledged. In this study we explain the use of different knowledge networks at the individual level from a resource-based perspective. This involves viewing networks as a resource that offers competitive advantages to an individual university researcher in terms of career development. Our results show that networking and career development are strongly related, but it is important to distinguish between different types of networks. Although networks on various levels (faculty, university, scientific, industrial) show strong correlations, we found three significant differences. First, networking within one’s own faculty and with researchers from other universities stimulates careers, while interactions with industry do not. Second, during the course of an academic career a researcher’s scientific network activity first rises, but then declines after about 20 years. Science-industry collaboration, however, continuously increases. Third, the personality trait ‘global innovativeness’ positively influences science-science interactions, but not science-industry interactions.
    Keywords: research collaboration, science-industry interaction, individual researcher, resource-based view
    Date: 2008–04
  3. By: Jesper Lindgaard Christensen
    Abstract: This study explores how capital markets, exemplified by venture capital, and recent trends in the patent system may influence innovation activity and the financing of small businesses. Specifically it is evaluated if there are costs and distortions of incentives related hereto. Additionally, the positive contribution of venture capital in the patenting process is investigated. It is found that trends at a macro economic level is nowadays of major importance for the patenting and innovation behaviour and financing of firms. Patenting has increased in scale, scope and trade volume, patents have become a strategic asset to an extent that may de-link it from innovation activities. The IPR-system may render distortions of innovation activities facilitated by these trends. These distortions may impose costs on the overall function of the innovation system, costs that are unequally distributed among firms as small firms are bearing most of the burdens. The results points to new perspectives on strategy that are important to management of firms and investment funds.
    Keywords: Small firms; venture capital; IPR
    JEL: O34 G24
    Date: 2008
  4. By: Schuett, Florian
    Abstract: A widely used clause in license contracts -- the field-of-use restriction (FOUR) -- precludes licensees from operating outside of the specified technical field. When a technology has several distinct applications, FOUR allow the licensor to slice up his rights and attribute them to the lowest-cost producer in each field of use. This can improve production efficiency. However, with complex technologies, the boundaries of fields of use may be difficult to codify, entailing a risk of overlap of licensees' rights. We explore how this affects the optimal license contract in a moral hazard framework where the licensor's effort determines the probability of overlap. We show that depending on the contracting environment, the license agreement may include output restrictions and nonlinear royalty schemes.
    JEL: L24
    Date: 2007–07–15
  5. By: Simona O. Negro; Marko P. Hekkert; Ruud Smits
    Abstract: In this paper we analyse the dynamics of three emerging innovation systems by using the system functions approach in which the underlying key activities that contribute to the build up of an innovation system are identified. The insights gained with respect to the dynamic functional patterns specific for each emerging innovation system will allow us to identify system failures and develop policy and policy measures that start out from an innovation systems’ perspective. We will present initial ideas on the building blocks for a more systemic policy aiming to support the development of new emerging innovation systems (and in doing so break down parts of the old innovation systems).
    Keywords: Innovation policy, Technological Innovation Systems, Emerging technologies, Renewable Energy System Functions
    Date: 2008–04
  6. By: Paola Giuri; Myriam Mariani
    Abstract: This paper studies the geographical breadth of knowledge spillovers. Previous research suggests that knowledge spillovers benefit from geographical proximity in technologically active and rich regions more than elsewhere. An alternative view explains the geographical breadth of knowledge spillovers as a function of the characteristics and personal networks of the individuals. We test these two competing theories by using information provided directly by the inventors of 6,750 European patents (PatVal-EU survey). Our results confirm the importance of inventors’ personal background. However, compared to previous research, we find that the level of education of the inventors is key in shaping the geographical breadth of knowledge spillovers. Highly educated inventors rely more on geographically wide research networks than their less educated peers. This holds after controlling for the mobility of the inventors and for the scientific nature of the research performed. Differently, location matters only in the very rare regions in Europe that perform the bulk of the research in the specific discipline of the inventors.
    JEL: O31 O33 R19
    Date: 2008
  7. By: Czarnitzki, Dirk; Toole, Andrew A.
    Abstract: This paper investigates how competition and firm size affect the relationship between market uncertainty and R&D investment. We use an intuitively appealing measure of firm-specific uncertainty along with panel data to show that firms invest less in current R&D as uncertainty about market returns increases. The effect of firm-specific uncertainty on R&D investment is smaller in concentrated markets – those where market power is higher and strategic rivalry is more intense. Further, the effect of uncertainty on R&D investment is attenuated for large firms which may be the result greater economies of scope. Unsicherheit ist ein immanenter Faktor von Forschungs- und Entwicklung (FuE) und hat einen grundlegenden Einfluss auf Investitionsentscheidungen. Die Literatur zu „Real Options“ Modellen bildet eine Basis für empirische Analysen von Investitionsentscheidungen, insbesondere wenn es sich um größtenteils irreversible Ausgaben wie FuE-Aktivitäten handelt. Wenn Profite solcher Investitionsprojekte ungewiss sind und Unternehmen diese Investition verzögern können, zeigen ökonomische Theorien, dass bei höherer Unsicherheit weniger investiert wird. Jedoch gibt es auch Modelle, die beschreiben, dass die Option die Investition zu verzögern, nicht profitabel sein muss, wenn Unternehmen einem hohen Konkurrenzdruck ausgesetzt sind, oder wenn diese FuE-Aktivitäten hinreichende Wachstumsmöglichkeiten versprechen. Durch solche gegensätzlichen Anreize ist der Effekt von Unsicherheit auf das Investitionsverhalten nicht eindeutig. In dieser Studie analysieren wir empirisch, wie Wettbewerb und Unternehmensgröße einen möglichen negativen Zusammenhang zwischen Investitionen und Unsicherheit beeinflussen. Mit Hilfe von Paneldaten können wir zeigen, dass Unternehmen bei höherer Unsicherheit über die erwarteten Profite tatsächlich weniger investieren. Jedoch ist der Effekt der firmenspezifischen Unsicherheit kleiner in konzentrierten Märkten sowie in Großunternehmen. Wir führen dies auf zwei Gründe zurück. In konzentrierten Märkten kann die strategische Interaktion zwischen Unternehmen intensiver sein als in anderen Märkten. Durch Innovationsaktivitäten kann ein Konkurrenzkampf in Produktmärkten vorweggenommen werden, sodass der negative Effekt von Unsicherheit reduziert wird. Ferner können Großunternehmen Erkenntnisse aus FuE-Aktivitäten besser in alternative Verwendungen transferieren als kleine Unternehmen („economies of scope“), was auch zur Reduktion der negativen Investitionsanreize unter Unsicherheit führt.
    Keywords: Real Options Theory, Uncertainty, R&D, Competition, Firm Size
    JEL: G31 L11 O31
    Date: 2008
  8. By: Daniel Ljungberg; Mattias Johansson; Maureen McKelvey
    Abstract: Universities have increasingly been facing a focus on competition for research resources, not the least for external funding. This paper studies structural characteristics of the Swedish university sector and these characteristics relation to the propensity of universities to attract external research funding. The findings show a clear polarization of the sector into ‘Larger research and teaching intensive’ universities, accessing the lion’s share of external research funding, and ‘Smaller education dependent’ higher education institutions. Following from this, the paper discusses specialization and division of labor among universities, in relation to the ability to gain critical mass and excellence in research.
    JEL: O32 I28
    Date: 2008

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