nep-ipr New Economics Papers
on Intellectual Property Rights
Issue of 2024‒02‒12
three papers chosen by
Giovanni Battista Ramello, Università di Turino

  1. Tickets to the global market: first US patent awards and Chinese firm exports By Gong, Robin Kaiji; Li, Yao Amber; Manova, Kalina; Teng Sun, Stephen
  2. Early Patent Disclosure and R&D Investment in Family Firms By Katrin Hussinger; Wunnam Issah
  3. Technological diversity to address complex challenges: the contribution of American universities to sdgs By Ascione, Grazia Sveva

  1. By: Gong, Robin Kaiji; Li, Yao Amber; Manova, Kalina; Teng Sun, Stephen
    Abstract: We investigate how international patent activity enables firms from emerging economies to thrive in the global marketplace. We match Chinese customs data to US patent records and leverage the quasi-random assignment of USPTO patent examiners to identify the causal effect of a US patent grant on the subsequent export performance of Chinese firms. Successful first-time patent applicants achieve significantly higher export growth, compared to otherwise similar first-time applicants that failed. This effect operates only in small part through market protection for technologically patent-related products in the US and is largely driven by expansion in other markets. The response across destinations and products reveals that a US patent award signals the Chinese firm's capacity to produce high-quality products and credibility to honor contracts, mitigating information frictions in international trade. There is little evidence for the relaxation of financial constraints or the promotion of follow-on innovation.
    Keywords: patent rights; innovation; export performance; trade; market protection; asymmetric information; signalling
    JEL: F10 F14 O30 O31 O34
    Date: 2023–11–21
  2. By: Katrin Hussinger (DEM, Université du Luxembourg); Wunnam Issah (University of Leicester School of Business, UK)
    Abstract: This paper shows that the American Inventor’s Protection Act, which introduced the disclosure of patent applications after 18 months, i.e. before a grant decision is taken and, hence, before it is known whether the respective technology receives legal protection, is associated with a reduction of family firms’ research and development (R&D) investment. This suggests that early disclosure of patent applications is perceived as a threat to family firms’ innovation activity and discourages their R&D investment. This finding deserves our attention because family firms account for a large share of the U.S. economy and a reduction of their R&D investment can have long-term consequences.
    Keywords: R&D investments, AIPA, Family firms, Socio-emotional wealth (SEW)
    JEL: O30 O34 O38 G32
    Date: 2023
  3. By: Ascione, Grazia Sveva
    Abstract: Much of the literature emphasizes the relationship between interdisciplinarity and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which are seen as closely linked and highly interdisciplinary. Therefore, innovation related to the SDGs is expected to be technologically diverse, especially when it emanates from academia, where teams of researchers collaborate to create innovation for the benefit of society. However, research on innovation for the SDGs is still in its infancy due to a lack of comprehensive quantitative analysis about its characteristics and a lack of consideration of potentially relevant actors, such as universities. This paper aims to make a threefold contribution to the existing literature by analyzing USPTO patent data from 2006 to 2020. First, we develop a novel method for tagging SDGs-related patents using an unsupervised natural language processing (NLP) approach. Starting from an initial list of keywords, we build an extended dictionary of keywords for each SDG based on the patent text by combining the TF-IDF method with a vector representation of the patent text and SDGs keywords. Second, we analyze innovation related to the SDGs, focusing particularly on the contribution of universities. Third, we compare the diversity of SDGs and non-SDGs patents using the Rao-Stirling index. Our results show that patents related to the SDGs are on the rise, but the trend is more pronounced for universities, where the majority of innovation production revolves around SDG 3 (good health and well-being). Moreover, the rise in SDGs patents seems to be led not only by green technologies, but mainly by high technologies. Eventually, the empirical results point in two directions. On the one hand, SDGs related patents are more diverse than their counterparts across almost all technology sectors. However, if we consider university patents only, there is a diversity premium only for a few SDGs, namely SDG 2, SDG 3, and SDG 15.
    Keywords: echnological diversity; University patents; Interdisciplinarity; SDGs; United States
    JEL: O3 O34
    Date: 2023–10–01

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