Contracting for an Innovation under Bilateral Asymmetric Information
AbstractThis article analyzes the optimal contract design between an inventor and a developer. The inventor is privately informed on the value of his idea. The developer must exert some non-verifiable effort to improve the probability of success of this innovation but may also choose to opt out of the relationship upon learning the quality of the idea. While first-best efficiency requires that all marginal returns on innovation be left to the developer, second-best efficiency taking into account this bilateral asymmetric information leads to distort downwards the developerâs incentives to prevent innovators from overstating the value of their ideas. There exists a trade-off between inviting inventor to reveal their ideas and inducing both effort and participation from the developer. The extent of this trade-off depends on the regime of property rights on ideas, i.e., on how easy to steal ideas. Since decreasing the marginal share of developers makes it more difficult to have them participating to the contract, countervailing incentives might sometimes appear. Taking into account those various effects leads to reduce the responsiveness of the contract to the exact value of the idea and might force to give up additional rents to the developer. Some extensions of our framework, including the cases of limited commitment, partial disclosure and double moral hazard, are studied to show the robustness and limits of our previous findings.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Toulouse School of Economics (TSE) in its series TSE Working Papers with number 09-058.
Date of creation: Jul 2009
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published in The Journal of Industrial Economics, vol.�58, n°2, mai 2010, p.�324-348.
Other versions of this item:
- Martimort, D. & Poudou, J.-C. & Sand-Zantman, W., 2006. "Contracting for an Innovation under Bilateral Asymmetric Information," Cahiers du LASER (LASER Working Papers) 2006.19, LASER (Laboratoire de Science Economique de Richter), Faculty of Economics, University of Montpellier 1.
- Martimort, David & Poudou, Jean-Christophe & Sand-Zantman, Wilfried, 2009. "Contracting for an Innovation under Bilateral Asymmetric Information," IDEI Working Papers 448, Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse.
- D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
- D86 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Economics of Contract Law
- L24 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Contracting Out; Joint Ventures
- O31 - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - - Technological Change; Research and Development; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Innovation and Invention: Processes and Incentives
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2010-05-22 (All new papers)
- NEP-CTA-2010-05-22 (Contract Theory & Applications)
- NEP-INO-2010-05-22 (Innovation)
- NEP-KNM-2010-05-22 (Knowledge Management & Knowledge Economy)
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