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The Sensitivity of Strategic and Corrective R&D Policy in Battles for Monopoly

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  • Kyle Bagwell
  • Robert W. Staiger

Abstract

We characterize the strategic and corrective role for R&D subsidies in an export market where R&D is an uncertain process and where the winner of the R&D competition monopolizes the market. Investments in R&D are assumed to induce either first order or mean-preserving second order shifts in the distribution of (i) a firm's costs, with the low cost firm then monopolizing the product market or, under a reinterpretation of the model, (ii) a firm's discovery dates, with the first firm to make the discovery enjoying patent protection of infinite duration. We show that, regardless of which form uncertainty takes in the R&D process, a national strategic incentive to subsidize R&D exists, but must be balanced against a national corrective incentive to tax R&D whenever a country has more than one firm involved in the R&D competition. We conclude that an R&D subsidy is likely to be attractive in markets where scale economies are sufficiently large that firms battle for the eventual monopoly position, provided only that the number of domestic firms involved in the R&D stage is low.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science in its series Discussion Papers with number 868.

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Date of creation: Aug 1989
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Handle: RePEc:nwu:cmsems:868

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  1. Cheng, Leonard K, 1987. "Optimal Trade and Technology Policies: Dynamic Linkages," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 28(3), pages 757-76, October.
  2. Tor Klette & David de Meza, 1986. "Is the Market Biased Against Risky R&D?," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 17(1), pages 133-139, Spring.
  3. Krishna, Kala & Thursby, Marie, 1991. "Optimal policies with strategic distortions," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 31(3-4), pages 291-308, November.
  4. Bagwell, Kyle & Staiger, Robert W., 1994. "The sensitivity of strategic and corrective R&D policy in oligopolistic industries," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 36(1-2), pages 133-150, February.
  5. Loury, Glenn C, 1979. "Market Structure and Innovation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 93(3), pages 395-410, August.
  6. Rothschild, Michael & Stiglitz, Joseph E., 1970. "Increasing risk: I. A definition," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 2(3), pages 225-243, September.
  7. Sudipto Bhattacharya and Dilip Mookherhee., 1984. "Portfolio Choice in Research and Development," Research Program in Finance Working Papers 147, University of California at Berkeley.
  8. Jonathan Eaton & Gene M. Grossman, 1983. "Optimal Trade and Industrial Policy Under Oligopoly," NBER Working Papers 1236, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Rogerson, William P, 1985. "The First-Order Approach to Principal-Agent Problems," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 53(6), pages 1357-67, November.
  10. Partha Dasgupta & Joseph Stiglitz, 1980. "Uncertainty, Industrial Structure, and the Speed of R&D," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 11(1), pages 1-28, Spring.
  11. Hadar, Josef & Russell, William R, 1969. "Rules for Ordering Uncertain Prospects," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 59(1), pages 25-34, March.
  12. Fudenberg, Drew & Tirole, Jean, 1984. "The Fat-Cat Effect, the Puppy-Dog Ploy, and the Lean and Hungry Look," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 74(2), pages 361-66, May.
  13. Lee, Tom & Wilde, Louis L, 1980. "Market Structure and Innovation: A Reformulation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 94(2), pages 429-36, March.
  14. Avinash K. Dixit & Gene M. Grossman, 1987. "Targeted Export Promotion with Several Oligopolistic Industries," NBER Working Papers 1344, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Brander, James A. & Spencer, Barbara J., 1985. "Export subsidies and international market share rivalry," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(1-2), pages 83-100, February.
  16. David M. Kreps & Jose A. Scheinkman, 1983. "Quantity Precommitment and Bertrand Competition Yield Cournot Outcomes," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 14(2), pages 326-337, Autumn.
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Cited by:
  1. Bagwell, Kyle & Staiger, Robert W., 1997. "Strategic export subsidies and reciprocal trade agreements: The natural monopoly case," Japan and the World Economy, Elsevier, vol. 9(4), pages 491-510, December.
  2. Naoto Jinji & Tsuyoshi Toshimitsu, 2010. "Strategic R&D Policy in a Quality-Differentiated Industry with More than Two Exporting Countries," Discussion papers e-09-001, Graduate School of Economics Project Center, Kyoto University.
  3. Jinji, Naoto & Toshimitsu, Tsuyoshi, 2013. "Strategic R&D policy in a quality-differentiated industry with three exporting countries," Japan and the World Economy, Elsevier, vol. 28(C), pages 132-142.
  4. Czarnitzki, Dirk & Kraft, Kornelius, 2004. "An empirical test of the asymmetric models on innovative activity: who invests more into R&D, the incumbent or the challenger?," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 54(2), pages 153-173, June.

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