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Inside multi-disciplinary science and engineering research centers: The impact of organizational climate on invention disclosures and patents

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  • Hunter, Emily M.
  • Perry, Sara Jansen
  • Currall, Steven C.
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    Abstract

    Much past research on commercialization activities by university scientists and engineers has focused on the role of resources in the extra-organizational commercialization environment, such as the availability of venture capital funding. By contrast, our theoretical and empirical interest was in intra-organizational dynamics impacting the context in which scientists and engineers work. Drawing upon organizational psychology literature on the construct of organizational climate, we posited that researchers working in an intra-organizational climate that supports commercialization and encourages intra-organizational boundary-spanning will be more likely to produce invention disclosures and patents. Our data from 218 respondents at 21 engineering research centers was both multi-method (i.e., qualitative data from interviews, longitudinal archival data, and survey data) and multi-level. Our results showed that an organizational climate characterized by support for commercialization predicted invention disclosures one year later and an organizational climate characterized by boundary-spanning predicted patent awards two years later.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Research Policy.

    Volume (Year): 40 (2011)
    Issue (Month): 9 ()
    Pages: 1226-1239

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:respol:v:40:y:2011:i:9:p:1226-1239

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    Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/respol

    Related research

    Keywords: Technology commercialization; Multi-disciplinary research; Innovation; Patents; Organizational climate;

    References

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    1. Powers, Joshua B. & McDougall, Patricia, 2005. "Policy orientation effects on performance with licensing to start-ups and small companies," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 34(7), pages 1028-1042, September.
    2. Siegel, Donald S. & Waldman, David & Link, Albert, 2003. "Assessing the impact of organizational practices on the relative productivity of university technology transfer offices: an exploratory study," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 32(1), pages 27-48, January.
    3. Jerry G. Thursby & Marie C. Thursby, 2004. "Are Faculty Critical? Their Role in University-Industry Licensing," Contemporary Economic Policy, Western Economic Association International, vol. 22(2), pages 162-178, 04.
    4. Friedman, Joseph & Silberman, Jonathan, 2003. " University Technology Transfer: Do Incentives, Management, and Location Matter?," The Journal of Technology Transfer, Springer, vol. 28(1), pages 17-30, January.
    5. Frank T. Rothaermel & Shanti D. Agung & Lin Jiang, 2007. "University entrepreneurship: a taxonomy of the literature," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 16(4), pages 691-791, August.
    6. O'Shea, Rory P. & Allen, Thomas J. & Chevalier, Arnaud & Roche, Frank, 2005. "Entrepreneurial orientation, technology transfer and spinoff performance of U.S. universities," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 34(7), pages 994-1009, September.
    7. Owen-Smith, Jason & Powell, Walter W., 2003. "The expanding role of university patenting in the life sciences: assessing the importance of experience and connectivity," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 32(9), pages 1695-1711, October.
    8. Scott Shane & Toby Stuart, 2002. "Organizational Endowments and the Performance of University Start-ups," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 48(1), pages 154-170, January.
    9. Scott Shane, 2002. "Selling University Technology: Patterns from MIT," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 48(1), pages 122-137, January.
    10. Rory O’Shea & Harveen Chugh & Thomas Allen, 2008. "Determinants and consequences of university spinoff activity: a conceptual framework," The Journal of Technology Transfer, Springer, vol. 33(6), pages 653-666, December.
    11. Kenney, Martin & Richard Goe, W., 2004. "The role of social embeddedness in professorial entrepreneurship: a comparison of electrical engineering and computer science at UC Berkeley and Stanford," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 33(5), pages 691-707, July.
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