nep-tid New Economics Papers
on Technology and Industrial Dynamics
Issue of 2022‒02‒07
twelve papers chosen by
Fulvio Castellacci
Universitetet i Oslo

  1. Identifying technological trajectories in the mining sector using patent citation networks By Alessandri, Enrico
  2. Green Technological Diversification and Local Recombinant Capabilities: The Role of Technological Novelty and Academic Inventors. By Orsatti, Gianluca; Quatraro,Francesco; Scandura, Alessandra
  3. Venture Capital Financing and Green Patenting By Andrea Bellucci; Serena Fatica; Aliki Georgakaki; Gianluca Gucciardi; Simon Letout; Francesco Pasimeni
  4. The importance of global value chains and regional capabilities for the economic complexity of EU-regions By Colozza, Federico; Boschma, Ron; Morrison, Andrea; Pietrobelli, Carlo
  5. Global Innovation and Knowledge Diffusion By Nelson Lind; Natalia Ramondo
  6. International Trade and Innovation By Ufuk Akcigit; Marc Melitz
  7. Impact of Mergers and Acquisitions on Innovation: Evidence from a Panel of Indian Pharmaceutical Firms By Basant, Rakesh; Jaiswal, Neha
  8. AI Patenting and Employment: Evidence from the Worlds' Top R&D Investors By Alessandro Sterlacchini
  9. Entries and Regional Growth: The Role of Relatedness By Tijl Hendrich; Jennifer Olsen; Judith Bayer
  10. 'Moving On' -- Investigating Inventors' Ethnic Origins Using Supervised Learning By Matthias Niggli
  11. Consumer Guilt and Sustainable Choice: Environmental Impact of Durable Goods Innovation By K. Sudhir; Ramesh Shankar; Yuan Jin
  12. Demography, growth and robots in advanced and emerging economies By Matteo Lanzafame

  1. By: Alessandri, Enrico (Bocconi University, Milan, and University of Urbino Carlo Bo, Urbino)
    Abstract: This paper uses patent citation networks to study technological change in the mining industry between 1970 and 2015. The analysis is undertaken at both the aggregate level by jointly considering all mining-related technological fields, and at the micro-level of patents in nine sub-fields, representing specific technological "sub-trajectories". Consistent with previous literature focused on other technological domains, we find that innovation patterns in the mining sector are "technology bounded", i.e. largely shaped by patenting activities carried out in a very limited range of mining technological fields, even though we detect a shift from exploration to environmental mining technologies (emergence of a new technological paradigm). In addition, we examine two aspects of technical change that have been largely disregarded in extant research: the geographical patterns of inventive activities and the role of key applicants in such patterns. We show that core mining patents and leading inventors involved originate almost exclusively from the US, so that trajectories appear to be heavily "geographically bounded", revealing that developing resource-abundant countries lag behind the technological frontier in mining. Moreover, only a few applicant firms are responsible for most inventive activities reflecting a highly concentrated oligopolistic structure, hence characterising trajectories as "applicant bounded". Similar results are observed at the level of sub-trajectories, although with some relevant exceptions, hence suggesting that a substantial heterogeneity exists within the industry and across mining-related technologies.
    Keywords: Technological trajectories, Technological sub-trajectories, Mining technologies, Geography of innovation, Patents, International technological frontier
    JEL: O31 L72 F23 R11
    Date: 2021–12–08
  2. By: Orsatti, Gianluca; Quatraro,Francesco; Scandura, Alessandra (University of Turin)
    Abstract: This paper studies the entry of regions in new green technological specializations, specifically investigating the role of local recombinant capabilities and the involvement of academic inventors in patenting activities, as well as the interplay between the two. We test our hypotheses on a dataset of Italian NUTS 3 regions over the period 1998-2009. The results show that both recombinant capabilities and the presence of academic inventors are positively associated to new entries in green technological specializations, and that their interaction provides a compensatory mechanism in regions lacking adequate novel combinatorial capabilities. The findings of this work are relevant for policy makers involved in the elaboration of successful regional specialization strategies in green technological domains.
    Date: 2021–10
  3. By: Andrea Bellucci (University of Insubria); Serena Fatica; Aliki Georgakaki; Gianluca Gucciardi (UniCredit Bank); Simon Letout; Francesco Pasimeni (IRENA – International Renewable Energy Agency)
    Abstract: This paper explores the role of green innovation in attracting venture capital (VC) financing. We use a unique dataset that matches information on VC transactions, companies' balance sheet variables and data on patented innovation at the firm level over the period 2008-2017. Taking advance of a novel granular definition of green innovative activities that tracks patents at the firm level, we show that green innovators are more likely to receive VC funding than firms without green patents. Likewise, a larger share of green vs. non-green patents in a firm's portfolio increases the probability of receiving VC finance. Robustness checks and extensions tackling several dimensions of heterogeneity corroborate the view that green patenting is an important driver of VC funding.
    Keywords: Venture capital, Green ventures, Patents, Green technology
    JEL: G24 M13 M21 O35 Q55
    Date: 2022–01
  4. By: Colozza, Federico (University of Roma Tre); Boschma, Ron (Department of Human Geography and Planning, Utrecht University, and UiS Business School, University of Stavanger); Morrison, Andrea (Department of Political and Social Sciences, University of Pavia, Department of Human Geography and Planning, Utrecht University, and ICRIOS, Bocconi University); Pietrobelli, Carlo (UNU-MERIT, Maastricht University, and University of Roma Tre)
    Abstract: This paper combines various literatures on Global Value Chains (GVC), Economic Complexity and Evolutionary Economic Geography. The objective is to assess the role of regional capabilities and GVC participation in fostering economic complexity in 236 NUTS2-regions in Europe. Our results suggest there is no such thing as a common path of economic upgrading across EU regions. Regions with high economic complexity tend to keep their advantageous positions, as they are capable of benefitting from both regional capabilities (as proxied by a high relatedness between local activities) and external linkages in terms of GVC participation. Conversely, low-complex regions do not benefit from GVC participation, unless their regional capabilities (in terms of relatedness density) are also stronger.
    Keywords: Economic Complexity, Evolutionary Economic Geography, Global Value Chains, Relatedness, Economic Upgrading, EU regions
    JEL: B52 F23 O19 O33 R10
    Date: 2021–12–17
  5. By: Nelson Lind; Natalia Ramondo
    Abstract: We develop a Ricardian model of trade in which countries innovate ideas that diffuse across the globe. In this model, the forces of innovation and diffusion combine to shape trade substitution patterns. Innovation makes a country technologically distinct, reducing their substitutability with other countries, while diffusion between countries generates technological similarity and increases head-to-head competition. In the special case of an innovation-only model where countries do not share ideas, productivities are independent across space, and the demand system is CES. As a consequence, departures from CES expenditure reveal diffusion patterns. Our theoretical results provide a mapping between the dynamics of observable trade flows and the dynamics of innovation and knowledge diffusion.
    JEL: F1 O3
    Date: 2022–01
  6. By: Ufuk Akcigit; Marc Melitz
    Abstract: This chapter was prepared for the Handbook of International Economics (Vol. 5) edited by Gita Gopinath, Elhanan Helpman, and Kenneth Rogoff. We provide a review of the recent literature -- both theoretical and empirical -- analyzing the multi-dimensional connections between globalization and innovation. We develop a model that features many of those mechanisms that connect trade and innovation. It features the joint selection of firms into innovation and international market participation (in our model, we restrict that participation to exports). Our model also highlights how exposure to international markets affects the incentives for innovation.
    JEL: F12 O31 O4
    Date: 2021–12
  7. By: Basant, Rakesh; Jaiswal, Neha
    Abstract: Based on the literature, the paper identifies processes that get initiated post an M&A event and affect the acquiring firm’s innovation efforts. We apply panel fixed effects estimation techniques to analyze the individual impact of mergers and acquisitions on R&D intensity of acquiring firms using data for 217 publically listed Indian pharmaceutical firms (both acquirers and non-acquirers) during 1999-2018. The study finds that acquisitions rather than mergers provide impetus to R&D in the acquiring firms. This suggests that these two combinations – mergers and acquisitions - do not unleash the same type of innovation activity related processes in the acquiring firm. Results also show that when mergers or acquisitions are combined with purchase of assets, they have a positive impact on R&D intensity. Purchase of assets when combined with M&A seem to provide access to relevant complementary assets that makes R&D activity profitable for the acquirer post the merger or acquisition event. Possibly, firms view purchase of assets as a strategy that is complementary to M&A strategies for enhancing innovation. The paper shows that impact of M&A on R&D takes time and it is useful to analyze the impact of mergers and acquisitions separately, rather than combining the two together.
    Date: 2022–01–25
  8. By: Alessandro Sterlacchini (Dipartimento di Scienze Economiche e Sociali - Universita' Politecnica delle Marche)
    Abstract: This paper considers 35 corporations which are among the biggest world's R&D investors and account for more than two thirds of AI patents worldwide. Their post-patenting performance is examined by focusing on employment changes and by comparing them with the outcomes of similar companies, operating in the same sectors and recording high levels of R&D expenditures as well, but not involved in AI patenting to a significant extent. The main finding is that substantial employment benefits for investing in AI inventions arise for the companies belonging to IT services, while in Computers & electronics and Automobiles the same investment is associated with employment reduction.
    Keywords: Artificial intelligence, Patents, Employment changes, Large corporations.
    JEL: O31 O33 J23
    Date: 2022–02
  9. By: Tijl Hendrich (CPB Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis); Jennifer Olsen (CPB Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis); Judith Bayer
    Abstract: If new businesses and establishments are more closely related to economic activities taking place in a region, is this associated with higher regional growth a few years later? In this paper, we investigate the relationship between this 'relatedness' of newcomers and growth in employment and labor productivity in Dutch regions. While we find a positive correlation with regional employment growth, its economic magnitude is small. It is known that new companies can stimulate growth through creative destruction: they push existing less productive companies out of the market or force them to produce more efficiently. New companies can also create knowledge spillovers by introducing new ideas or techniques that disseminate on a local scale. The current research examines these two aspects in conjunction. We consider two industries to be related when their employees possess similar skills. It will then be easier for employees to switch jobs and transfer knowledge between these two sectors.
    JEL: L26 M13 O18 R11
    Date: 2022–01
  10. By: Matthias Niggli
    Abstract: Patent data provides rich information about technical inventions, but does not disclose the ethnic origin of inventors. In this paper, I use supervised learning techniques to infer this information. To do so, I construct a dataset of 95'202 labeled names and train an artificial recurrent neural network with long-short-term memory (LSTM) to predict ethnic origins based on names. The trained network achieves an overall performance of 91% across 17 ethnic origins. I use this model to classify and investigate the ethnic origins of 2.68 million inventors and provide novel descriptive evidence regarding their ethnic origin composition over time and across countries and technological fields. The global ethnic origin composition has become more diverse over the last decades, which was mostly due to a relative increase of Asian origin inventors. Furthermore, the prevalence of foreign-origin inventors is especially high in the USA, but has also increased in other high-income economies. This increase was mainly driven by an inflow of non-western inventors into emerging high-technology fields for the USA, but not for other high-income countries.
    Date: 2022–01
  11. By: K. Sudhir (Cowles Foundation, Yale University; Cowles Foundation, Yale University); Ramesh Shankar (University of Connecticut); Yuan Jin (Texas Tech University)
    Abstract: The paper develops a modeling framework to study how sustainability interventions impact consumer adoption of durable goods innovation, firm profit and environmental outcomes in equilibrium. Our two period model with forward looking consumers and a monopoly firm introducing an innovation in the second period accommodates three key features: (1) it builds on the psychology literature linking reactive and anticipatory guilt to consumers’ environmental sensitivity on initial purchase and upgrade decisions; (2) it disentangles environmental harm over the product life into that arising from product use and dumping at replacement; and (3) it clarifies how a taxonomy of innovations (function, fashion and use-efficiency) differ in how they provide value and cause environmental harm during use and dumping. Given how guilt impacts environmental sensitivity, the model allows for owners upgrading a product to be more environmentally sensitive than first time buyers; this makes dumping harm and in-use harm from products not fungible. We find that with fashion and function innovations, increasing consumer sensitivity to environmental harm can surprisingly result in increased environmental harm. Further, when consumers are very sensitive to environmental harm, firms will not inform (pre-announce to) consumers about the impending arrival of use-efficiency innovation; to minimize environmental harm, a sustainability advocate needs to inform consumers. Thus, contrary to conventional wisdom, consumer environmental sensitivity does not always substitute for the role of sustainability advocates. Our results clarify how to design win-win policies for firms and the environment; and when advocates have complementary/ adversarial roles relative to firms to achieve sustainability goals.
    Keywords: Durable goods, Planned Obsolescence, Sustainability, Innovation, Environmental Costs
    Date: 2022–01
  12. By: Matteo Lanzafame (Asian Development Bank)
    Abstract: This paper provides estimates of the impact of demographic change on labor productivity growth, relying on annual data over 1961-2018 for a panel f 90 advanced and emerging economies. We find that increases in both the young and old population shares have significantly negative effects on labor productivity growth, working via various channels – including physical and human capital accumulation. Splitting the analysis for advanced and emerging economies shows that population ageing has a greater effect on emerging economies than on advanced economies. Extending the benchmark model to include a proxy for the robotization of production, we find evidence indicating that automation reduces the negative effects unfavorable demographic change – in particular, population aging-on labor productivity.
    Keywords: Demographic Change, Labor Productivity, Robots
    JEL: C33 J11 O40
    Date: 2021–12

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