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Optimal Product Proliferation in Monopoly: A Dynamic Analysis

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  • Luca Lambertini

    (Department of Economics, University of Bologna,Italy)

Abstract

The monopolist's incentives towards product proliferation are evaluated in an optimal control model considering three alternative regimes: profit-seeking; social planning; and a hybrid case with monopoly pricing and a regulator setting product innovation to maximize welfare. In equilibrium, the profit-seeking firm supplies a socially suboptimal number of varieties to reduce cannibalization while the social planner exploits the same effect to satisfy consumersÕ love for variety and decrease the market price of all products. In terms of the Schumpeter vs Arrow debate on the relationship between market structure and innovation incentives, the results obtained in this model have a definite Arrovian flavour.

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Article provided by Rimini Centre for Economic Analysis in its journal Review of Economic Analysis.

Volume (Year): 1 (2009)
Issue (Month): 1 (September)
Pages: 80-97

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Handle: RePEc:ren:journl:v:1:y:2009:i:1:p:80-97

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Keywords: multiproduct firm; product innovation; optimal control;

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  2. 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.
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  7. R. Cellini & L. Lambertini, 2002. "Private and Social Incentives Towards Investment in Product Differentiation," Working Papers 431, Dipartimento Scienze Economiche, Universita' di Bologna.
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Cited by:
  1. Anton Bondarev, 2012. "The long-run dynamics of product and process innovations for a multi-product monopolist," Economics of Innovation and New Technology, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 21(8), pages 775-799, November.
  2. Bondarev, Anton A., 2012. "Optimal control over a continuous range of homogeneous and heterogeneous innovations with finite life-cycles," MPRA Paper 40068, University Library of Munich, Germany.

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