nep-ipr New Economics Papers
on Intellectual Property Rights
Issue of 2010‒07‒17
thirteen papers chosen by
Roland Kirstein
Otto von Guericke University Magdeburg

  1. The Quality Factor in Patent Systems: (second and revised version) By Bruno Van Pottelsberghe
  2. Productivity and Propensity: The Two Faces of the R&D-Patent Relationship By Gaétan de Rassenfosse
  3. The globalisation of intellectual property rights: four learned lessons and four theses By Archibugi, Daniele; Filippetti, Andrea
  4. Fair value on commons-based intellectual property assets: Lessons of an estimation over Linux kernel. By García-García, Jesús; Alonso de Magdaleno, María Isabel
  5. Innovation, competition and incentives for R&D By Wörter, Martin; Rammer, Christian; Arvanitis, Spyros
  6. Product, process and organizational innovation: drivers, complementarity, and productivity effects By Polder, Michael; Van Leeuwen, George; Mohnen, Pierre; Raymond, Wladimir
  7. Interaction with universities and firm's innovative performance: evidence from the Spanish innovation survey By Vega-Jurado, Jaider; Manjarrés-Henríquez, Liney; Gutiérrez-Gracia, Antonio; Fernández-de-Lucio, Ignacio
  8. Competition Policy and Property Rights.. By Vickers, John
  9. Scientific excellence and extramural research grants: Beggars can't be choosers? By Grimpe, Christoph
  10. Profits, R&D and Innovation: a Model and a Test By Francesco Bogliacino; Mario Pianta
  11. Legal Institutions, Innovation and Growth By Luca Anderlini; Leonardo Felli; Giovanni Immordino; Alessandro Riboni
  12. Le financement public de l’enseignement universitaire au Québec By Claude Lemelin
  13. Copyright and brands in the digital age By Olivier Bomsel

  1. By: Bruno Van Pottelsberghe
    Abstract: This paper develops a methodology to compare the quality of examination services across patent offices. Quality is defined as the extent to which patent offices comply with their patentability conditions in a transparent way. The methodology consists of a two-layer analytical framework encompassing “legal standards” and their “operational design”, which includes several interdependent components that affect the stringency and transparency of the filtering process. The comparison of patent offices in Europe (EPO), Japan (JPO) and the US (USPTO) shows that their operational designs differ substantially: the EPO provides higher-quality and more expensive services than the USPTO, while the JPO is in an intermediate position. These results illustrate that different system designs lead to different outcomes in term of backlogs, patent propensity and the number of dubious patent rights in force. In this respect, they: 1) provide an empirical validation of Jaffe and Lerner's (2004) conjecture of a vicious cycle between quality of examinations and demand for patents; and 2) highlight the need for a multi-faceted convergence of patent systems before mutual recognition is put in place.
    Keywords: patent system; quality; patent propensity; intellectual property
    JEL: O30 O31 O34 O38 O57
    Date: 2010–07
  2. By: Gaétan de Rassenfosse
    Abstract: This paper tackles one of the most persistent criticism of patent statistics. Because not all inventions are patented, the patent-to-R&D ratio reflects both a productivity effect (the number of inventions created per unit of research input) and a propensity effect (the proportion of inventions patented). We propose a solution to this identification problem. Our methodology uses information on the density of patent value and leads to results that are easy to interpret. It is applied to a novel data set of priority patent applications in which each patent is fractionally allocated to its inventors’ countries and to the technological areas to which it belongs. Interestingly, it is frequently observed that an industry may exhibit a low number of patents per unit of R&D in one country yet actually be more productive than the same industry in another country where the patentto-R&D ratio is higher.
    Keywords: identification strategy; patent family; patent value; research productivity; propensity to patent
    JEL: O30 O52
    Date: 2010–07
  3. By: Archibugi, Daniele; Filippetti, Andrea
    Abstract: Intellectual Property Rights (IPRs) have become ubiquitous in the current debate and have emerged as the key issue of global innovation policy. The ‘Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights’ (TRIPS) Agreement, signed in 1994 as a founding element of the World Trade Organisation, represents the most important attempt to establish a global harmonisation of Intellectual Property protection. The aim of this article is to re-examine critically what has become the common wisdom around IPRs, TRIPS and their effects. We argue that supporters of IPRs in western corporations and governments as well as detractors in global movements and developing countries have overestimated their importance in the process of generation and diffusion of knowledge and innovation. On the basis of some key learned lessons on the nature of innovation and technological change, we assess four theses about TRIPS and its impact on the global generation and distribution of knowledge. Finally, the policy implications concerning international organisations and technological transfer are discussed
    Keywords: globalisation of IPRs; innovation; technological transfer
    JEL: O34 Q55 O3
    Date: 2010–05
  4. By: García-García, Jesús; Alonso de Magdaleno, María Isabel
    Abstract: Open source describes practices in production and development that promote access to the end product's source materials, spreading development burden amongst individuals and companies. This model has resulted in a large and efficient ecosystem and unheralded software innovation, freely available to society. Open source methods are also increasingly being applied in other fields of endeavour, such as biotechnology or cultural production. But under financial reporting framework, general volunteer activity is not reflected on financial statements. As a result, there is not value of volunteer contributions and there is also no single source for cost estimates of how much it has taken to develop an open source technology. This volunteer activity encloses not only individuals but corporations developing and contributing open source products. Standard methodology for reporting open source asset valuation is needed and must include value creation from the perspective of the different stakeholders.
    Keywords: FLOSS; commons; accounting standards; financial reporting
    JEL: M14 G34 M4
    Date: 2010–06–08
  5. By: Wörter, Martin; Rammer, Christian; Arvanitis, Spyros
    Abstract: This paper analyses the relationship between past innovation output, competition, and future innovation input in a dynamic econometric setting. We distinguish two dimensions of competition that correspond to the concepts of product substitutability and entry barriers due to fixed costs. Based on firm-level panel data for Germany and Switzerland we obtain consistent results for both countries. Innovation output in t-1 as measured by the sales share of innovative products is positively related to the degree of product obsolescence in t, and negatively to the degree of substitutability in t in both countries. Further, we find that rapid product obsolescence provides positive incentives for higher - primarily product-oriented - R&D investments in t+1, while high substitutability exerts negative incentives for future R&D investment. --
    Keywords: Innovation,R&D,Competition
    JEL: O3
    Date: 2010
  6. By: Polder, Michael; Van Leeuwen, George; Mohnen, Pierre; Raymond, Wladimir
    Abstract: We propose a model where both R&D and ICT investment feed into a system of three innovation output equations (product, process and organizational innovation), which ultimately feeds into a productivity equation. We find that ICT investment and usage are important drivers of innovation in both manufacturing and services. Doing more R&D has a positive effect on product innovation in manufacturing. The strongest productivity effects are derived from organizational innovation. We find positive effects of product and process innovation when combined with an organizational innovation. There is evidence that organizational innovation is complementary to process innovation.
    Keywords: Innovation; ICT; R&D; productivity
    JEL: L25 O30 O32 O33 O31
    Date: 2010–06
  7. By: Vega-Jurado, Jaider; Manjarrés-Henríquez, Liney; Gutiérrez-Gracia, Antonio; Fernández-de-Lucio, Ignacio
    Abstract: This paper analyses the effect of interaction with universities on firms? innovation output, measured as the degree of novelty of product innovation. The analysis is based on a sample of 3,257 manufacturing firms, active in innovation, and located in Spain. We distinguish between two types of interaction mechanisms: cooperation in innovation activities and outsourcing of research and development (R&D) services. Using data from two waves of the Spanish innovation survey (2004 and 2007), we examine the effect of interaction in 2004 on subsequent product innovation in 2005-2007. The results show that neither cooperation with universities nor outsourcing of R&D services to these agents has a significant effect on product innovation. In other words, for Spanish manufacturing firms the acquisition of knowledge from universities does not represent an important strategy to introduce new products into the market. In contrast, cooperation with customers and acquisition of external R&D from other firms seem to be important for innovation, especially for firms pursuing more radical innovation.
    JEL: O31 O32 L60
    Date: 2010–07–06
  8. By: Vickers, John
    Abstract: One of the most controversial questions in current competition policy is when, if ever, should competition law require a firm with market power to share its property, notably intellectual property, with its rivals? And if supply is required, on what terms? These questions are discussed with reference to recent law cases including the EC Microsoft judgment of 2007 and the US linkLine case of 2009. The analysis focuses on whether competition law and regulation are complements or substitutes and on incentives for investment and (sequential) innovation.
    JEL: O34 L41 O31 K21
    Date: 2010–05
  9. By: Grimpe, Christoph
    Abstract: Several reviews and impact assessment studies have concluded that the Sixth Framework Programme for Research and Technological Development (FP6) succeeded in fostering scientific excellence and attracting the 'A Team' in public science. However, these studies typically fail to contrast their findings with the variety of funding opportunities available to public science. Based on a sample of more than 1,000 scientists at universities and public research institutes in Germany, this paper finds that highly credentialed faculty typically chose other funding opportunities than FP6, for example grants from science foundations or industry. In fact, FP6 only seems to be attractive for the scientific 'B Team' that works rather application oriented. The findings further indicate that an FP6 participation substitutes for other grant programmes while the latter are complementary to each other. If this is intended to be changed other funding priorities will be required, for example smaller team sizes, less predefined research topics, a reduced administrative burden, and a higher quality of the peer review system. --
    Keywords: Research funding,scientist productivity,Sixth Framework Programme
    JEL: L13 O31
    Date: 2010
  10. By: Francesco Bogliacino (JRC-IPTS); Mario Pianta (University of Urbino)
    Abstract: In this article we investigate – both conceptually and empirically – the relationship between three interconnected elements of the Schumpeterian “engine of progress”: the ability of industries’ R&D efforts to turn out successful innovations; the ability of innovations to lead to high entrepreneurial profits; the commitment of industries to invest profits in further technological efforts. We build a simultaneous three-equation model – with appropriate lags – and we test it at industry level – for 38 manufacturing and service sectors – on eight European countries over two time periods from 1994 to 2006. The results show that the model effectively accounts for the dynamics of European industries. Our main results are that demand and innovation are the key determinants for firm profitability; second that both technology adoption and R&D concur to improve innovative performance; third, that R&D is path dependent and is negatively related to the distance from the frontier. Finally, manufacturing and services show similar behaviour.
    Keywords: Profits, R&D, Innovation, System Two Stages Least Squares
    JEL: L6 L8 O31 O33 O52
    Date: 2010–05
  11. By: Luca Anderlini (Georgetown University); Leonardo Felli (London School of Economics); Giovanni Immordino (Università di Salerno and CSEF); Alessandro Riboni (Université de Montréal)
    Abstract: We build a stylized model of endogenous technological change and analyze the relationship between legal institutions, innovation and growth. Two legal systems are analyzed: a rigid system, where an uncontingent law is written ex ante (before knowing the current technology) and a flexible system where law-makers select the law ex post (after observing the current technology). We show that flexible legal systems dominate in terms of welfare, amount of innovation and output growth in economies at intermediate stages of technological development -- which are periods when legal change is more needed -- while rigid legal systems are preferable at early stages of technological development, when commitment problems are more severe. For mature technologies the two legal systems are shown to be equivalent. Surprisingly, we find that rigid legal systems may induce excessive (greater than first-best) R&D investment and output growth.
    Keywords: Commitment, Flexibility, Innovation and Growth
    JEL: O3 O43 L51 E61
    Date: 2010–07–03
  12. By: Claude Lemelin
    Abstract: The topic of this paper is public financing of university education in Quebec, which is analysed from the point of view of scarcity: even governments must submit to this reality. Our argument is built around three questions: How much should society spend? How should the burden be distributed between students or their relatives and governments? Which form should the public contribution take? Answers to these questions lead to proposals of reform. Ours pay attention to the distribution of burden and the form of public spending much more than to the level of overall spending. Student fees should be increased in Quebec, and reflect the varying costs of different programs. Student aid should also be increased but given more selectively, to those students who are more sensitive to price. A larger access to loans should be considered only on the condition that these loans cease to be subsidized. <P>Dans ce texte, nous considérons le financement public de l’enseignement universitaire au Québec. L’angle retenu est la rareté, à laquelle même les gouvernements sont soumis. Notre propos s’organise autour de trois questions : quel effort devrait consentir la société québécoise? Comment répartir le fardeau de cet effort entre les principaux acteurs : les étudiants ou leurs proches, et les gouvernements? Quelle forme donner à la contribution publique? La réponse à ces questions nous mène à suggérer des pistes de réforme. Plus que le niveau des dépenses, ce sont la répartition du fardeau et la forme de l’intervention publique qui devraient être modifiées en priorité. Nous sommes favorables à l’augmentation et à la modulation des droits de scolarité. L’aide financière aux étudiants devrait aussi être augmentée, mais continuer d’être réservée aux plus démunis; l’accès accru à cette aide ne devrait se faire qu’au prix de la disparition de la subvention aux prêts.
    Keywords: finance, public, education, university, student, fees, aid , financement public, enseignement, université, étudiant, droits de scolarité, aide
    JEL: I22 I28
    Date: 2010–05–01
  13. By: Olivier Bomsel (CERNA - Centre d'économie industrielle - Mines ParisTech)
    Abstract: The adoption of binary code as the universal standard for globalized communications generates highly positive externalities often referred to as network effects. But what about meaning? What are the externalities associated with the formatting and circulation of meaning, and are they, too,all positive? Within the digital paradigm, is it really possible to separate the notion of expression — covered by copyright — from the meanings it creates? Isn't meaning heavily dependent on the concept of brand? And if so, how do copyright and trademark institutions work together to stimulate and promote meaningful information? To answer these questions, we will look at how the meaningful forms of expression — the works — that have historically been covered by copyright generate specific types of externality, both positive and negative, giving rise to both incentive and censorship mechanisms. We will then show how the institutions of copyright and author's rights that allow the appropriation of a meaningful good also confer a brand on it, identifying its sources. This leads to mixed externalities from both directions, with the result that copyright and trademark institutions cannot be fully separated from each other.
    Keywords: copyright; brand; Intellectual Property; trademark law; media economics
    Date: 2010

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