Restructuring Research: Communication Costs and the Democratization of University Innovation
AbstractWe report evidence indicating that Bitnet adoption facilitated increased research collaboration between US universities. However, not all institutions benefited equally. Using panel data from seven top engineering journals, Bitnet connection records, and a variety of institution ranking data, we find that medium-ranked universities were the primary beneficiaries; they benefited largely by increasing their collaboration with top-ranked schools. Furthermore, we find that the magnitude of this effect was greatest for co-located pairs. These results suggest that the most salient effect of lowering communication costs may have been to facilitate gains from trade through the specialization of research tasks. Thus, the advent of Bitnet -- and likely subsequent versions, including the Internet -- seems to have increased the role of second-tier universities in the national innovation system as producers of new, high-quality knowledge.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 12812.
Date of creation: Dec 2006
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Publication status: published as Ajay Agrawal & Avi Goldfarb, 2008. "Restructuring Research: Communication Costs and the Democratization of University Innovation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(4), pages 1578-90, September.
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- Ajay Agrawal & Avi Goldfarb, 2008. "Restructuring Research: Communication Costs and the Democratization of University Innovation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(4), pages 1578-90, September.
- O33 - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - - Technological Change; Research and Development; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Technological Change: Choices and Consequences; Diffusion Processes
- R11 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General Regional Economics - - - Regional Economic Activity: Growth, Development, Environmental Issues, and Changes
- Z13 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - Economic Sociology; Economic Anthropology; Social and Economic Stratification
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2007-01-13 (All new papers)
- NEP-EDU-2007-01-13 (Education)
- NEP-INO-2007-01-13 (Innovation)
- NEP-IPR-2007-01-13 (Intellectual Property Rights)
- NEP-KNM-2007-01-13 (Knowledge Management & Knowledge Economy)
- NEP-SOG-2007-01-13 (Sociology of Economics)
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Blog mentionsAs found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
- RePEc and the democratization of research
by Christian Zimmermann in RePEc blog on 2008-12-09 21:37:20
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