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How to Win Schumpeterian Competition: Technological Transfers in the German Plastics Industry from the 1930s to the 1970s

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  • Jochen Streb
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    Abstract

    Introducing the concept of innovation capital we will analyse conditions under which a national industry is able to succeed in international Schumpeterian competition. Then we will discuss the significance of this concept for the economic development of the German plastics industry from the 1930s to the 1970s. Using a repeated game model of technological cooperation we will especially focus on technological transfers from chemical firms to plastics fabricators. We will deploy both a microeconomic approach when viewing product innovations transferred by the so-called Kunststoffrohstoffabteilung (KURO) of chemical firm BASF, and a macroeconomic approach when looking at the development of total factor productivity in the German plastics fabricating industry. It will turn out that we can distinguish three subperiods with respect to technological cooperation in the German plastics industry: the beginning in the period of National Socialist dictatorship and post war reconstruction, the developing in the time of the West German economic miracle, and the ending in the decade of the two oil price shocks.

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    File URL: http://www.econ.yale.edu/growth_pdf/cdp811.pdf
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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by Economic Growth Center, Yale University in its series Working Papers with number 811.

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    Length: 34 pages
    Date of creation: Sep 1999
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:egc:wpaper:811

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    Keywords: Technological transfer; Schumpeterian competition; Repeated game; Plastics industry; Germany;

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    1. Grossman, Sanford J & Hart, Oliver D, 1986. "The Costs and Benefits of Ownership: A Theory of Vertical and Lateral Integration," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 94(4), pages 691-719, August.
    2. Richard R. Nelson, 1995. "Recent Evolutionary Theorizing about Economic Change," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 33(1), pages 48-90, March.
    3. Kenneth J. Arrow, 1975. "Vertical Integration and Communication," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 6(1), pages 173-183, Spring.
    4. David Dollar & Edward N. Wolff, 1993. "Competitiveness, Convergence, and International Specialization," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262041359, December.
    5. Chris Freeman & Luc Soete, 1997. "The Economics of Industrial Innovation, 3rd Edition," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 3, volume 1, number 0262061953, December.
    6. Friedman, James W, 1971. "A Non-cooperative Equilibrium for Supergames," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 38(113), pages 1-12, January.
    7. Fudenberg, Drew & Gilbert, Richard & Stiglitz, Joseph & Tirole, Jean, 1983. "Preemption, leapfrogging and competition in patent races," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 3-31, June.
    8. Radner, Roy, 1970. "Problems in the Theory of Markets under Uncertainty," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 60(2), pages 454-60, May.
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