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Entrepreneurs and new ideas

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  • Bruno Biais
  • Enrico Perotti

Abstract

We study how early-stage new ideas are turned into successful businesses. Even promising ideas can be unprofitable if they fail on one dimension, such as technical feasibility, correspondence to market demand, legality, or patentability. To screen good ideas, the entrepreneur needs to hire experts who evaluate the idea along their dimensions of expertise. Sharing the idea, however, creates the risk that the expert would steal it. Yet, the idea-thief cannot contact any other expert, lest he should in turn steal the idea. Thus, stealing leads to incomplete screening and is unattractive if the information of the other expert is critical and highly complementary. In such cases, the entrepreneur can form a partnership with the experts, thus granting them the advantage of accessing each other's information. Yet, very valuable ideas cannot be shared because it is too tempting to steal them. Copyright (c) 2008, RAND.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by RAND Corporation in its journal The RAND Journal of Economics.

Volume (Year): 39 (2008)
Issue (Month): 4 ()
Pages: 1105-1125

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Handle: RePEc:bla:randje:v:39:y:2008:i:4:p:1105-1125

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  1. Lazear, Edward, 2003. "Entrepreneurship," IZA Discussion Papers 760, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  2. Laffont, Jean-Jacques & Martimort, David, 1998. "Mechanism Design with Collusion and Correlation," IDEI Working Papers 81, Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse.
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  5. Anton, James J & Yao, Dennis A, 2002. "The Sale of Ideas: Strategic Disclosure, Property Rights, and Contracting," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 69(3), pages 513-31, July.
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  7. Maskin, Eric & Tirole, Jean, 1992. "The Principal-Agent Relationship with an Informed Principal, II: Common Values," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 60(1), pages 1-42, January.
  8. Hellmann, Thomas F., 2000. "Entrepreneurship and the Process of Obtaining Resource Commitments," Research Papers 1704, Stanford University, Graduate School of Business.
  9. Aghion, Philippe & Tirole, Jean, 1994. "On the Management of Innovation," IDEI Working Papers 36, Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse.
  10. Stanley M. Besen & Leo J. Raskind, 1991. "An Introduction to the Law and Economics of Intellectual Property," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 5(1), pages 3-27, Winter.
  11. Kenneth Arrow, 1962. "Economic Welfare and the Allocation of Resources for Invention," NBER Chapters, in: The Rate and Direction of Inventive Activity: Economic and Social Factors, pages 609-626 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Aghion, Philippe & Tirole, Jean, 1994. "The Management of Innovation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 109(4), pages 1185-1209, November.
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Cited by:
  1. Bayar, Onur & Chemmanur, Thomas J. & Liu, Mark H., 2011. "A theory of equity carve-outs and negative stub values under heterogeneous beliefs," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 100(3), pages 616-638, June.
  2. Thomas Hellmann & Enrico Perotti, 2011. "The Circulation of Ideas in Firms and Markets," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 57(10), pages 1813-1826, October.
  3. Herbst, Patrick & Walz, Uwe, 2009. "The design of vertical R&D collaborations," CFS Working Paper Series 2009/06, Center for Financial Studies (CFS).
  4. Prüfer, J., 2008. "Semi-Public Contests," Discussion Paper 2008-023, Tilburg University, Tilburg Law and Economic Center.
  5. Dewatripont, Mathias & Tirole, Jean, 2004. "Modes of Communication," IDEI Working Papers 323, Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse.
  6. Andres Almazan & Javier Suarez & Sheridan Titman, 2009. "Firms' Stakeholders and the Costs of Transparency," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 18(3), pages 871-900, 09.
  7. Tykvova, Tereza, 2007. "Who chooses whom? Syndication, skills and reputation," Review of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 16(1), pages 5-28.
  8. Walter Buhr, 2009. "Infrastructure of the Market Economy," Volkswirtschaftliche Diskussionsbeiträge 132-09, Universität Siegen, Fakultät Wirtschaftswissenschaften, Wirtschaftsinformatik und Wirtschaftsrecht.
  9. Grossman, Herschel I., 2005. "Inventors and pirates: creative activity and intellectual property rights," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 21(2), pages 269-285, June.
  10. Casamatta, Catherine & Haritchabalet, Carole, 2007. "Experience, screening and syndication in venture capital investments," Journal of Financial Intermediation, Elsevier, vol. 16(3), pages 368-398, July.
  11. Alexandre Gaudeul, 2004. "Open Source Software Development Patterns and License Terms," Industrial Organization 0409008, EconWPA.
  12. Dominique Demougin & Oliver Fabel, 2006. "The Division of Ownership in New Ventures," SFB 649 Discussion Papers SFB649DP2006-047, Sonderforschungsbereich 649, Humboldt University, Berlin, Germany.
  13. Bourjade, Sylvain & Jullien, Bruno, 2004. "Expertise and Bias in Decision Making," MPRA Paper 7251, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised Jan 2007.
  14. Marini, Marco A., 2005. "The value of a new idea: knowledge transmission, workers' mobility and market structure," MPRA Paper 1687, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised Jan 2006.

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