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Which firms want PhDs? The effect of the university-industry relationship on the PhD labour market

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  • José García Quevedo

    ()
    (University of Barcelona)

  • Francisco Mas-Verdú

    (Universidad Politécnica de Valencia)

  • Jose Polo Otero

    (University of Barcelona)

Abstract

PhD graduates hold the highest education degree, are trained to conduct research and can be considered a key element in the creation, commercialization and diffusion of innovations. The impact of PhDs on innovation and economic development takes place through several channels such as the accumulation of scientific capital stock, the enhancement of technology transfers and the promotion of cooperation relationships in innovation processes. Although the placement of PhDs in industry provides a very important mechanism for transmitting knowledge from universities to firms, information about the characteristics of the firms that employ PhDs is very scarce. The goal of this paper is to improve understanding of the determinants of the demand for PhDs in the private sector. Three main potential determinants of the demand for PhDs are considered: cooperation between firms and universities, R&D activities of firms and several characteristics of firms, size, sector, productivity and age. The results from the econometric analysis show that cooperation between firms and universities encourages firms to recruit PhDs and point to the existence of accumulative effects in the hiring of PhD graduates.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Basque Institute of Competitiveness in its series Working Papers with number 2010R02.

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Length: 19
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Handle: RePEc:ivc:wpaper:2010r02

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Keywords: PhD; university; R&D; technology transfer;

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  1. Elena Huergo & Jordi Jaumandreu, 2004. "How Does Probability of Innovation Change with Firm Age?," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 22(3_4), pages 193-207, 04.
  2. Azagra-Caro, Joaquín M. & Fernández-de-Lucio, Ignacio & Perruchas, François & Mattsson, Pauline, 2008. "What Do Patent Examiner Inserted Citations Indicate For A Region With Low Absorptive Capacity," INGENIO (CSIC-UPV) Working Paper Series 200808, INGENIO (CSIC-UPV), revised 27 Apr 2010.
  3. Jensen, Morten Berg & Johnson, Bjorn & Lorenz, Edward & Lundvall, Bengt Ake, 2007. "Forms of knowledge and modes of innovation," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 36(5), pages 680-693, June.
  4. Grimpe, Christoph & Sofka, Wolfgang, 2009. "Search patterns and absorptive capacity: Low- and high-technology sectors in European countries," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 38(3), pages 495-506, April.
  5. Mangematin, V., 2000. "PhD job market: professional trajectories and incentives during the PhD," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 29(6), pages 741-756, June.
  6. V Mangematin & S Robin, 2003. "The two faces of PhD students: Management of early careers of French PhDs in life sciences," Science and Public Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 30(6), pages 405-414, December.
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