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The determinants of scientific research agenda: Why do academic inventors choose to perform patentable versus non-patentable research?

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  • Hussler Caroline
  • Pénin Julien

Abstract

This paper explores the determinants of scientific research agenda. By using an original dataset that includes extensive information about 269 French academic inventors, we analyze why scientists choose to perform patentable versus non-patentable research. Usually economic studies tackle this problem by using the number of invented patents as a proxy of researchers’ willingness to perform patentable research. The originality of the paper is that, in addition to the number of invented patents, we rely on a survey-base dependant variable that indicates whether or not scientists acknowledge orienting deliberately their research towards patentable areas. Our results indicate that past experience with respect to patenting activity matters: academic inventors who have already experienced a successful technology transfer are more inclined to orient their research towards patentable domains. Similarly, the institutional environment plays an explanatory role, whereas conversely, scientific discipline, age and individual research performance do not seem to affect the decision to orient research towards patentable areas. Yet, age and scientific performance positively influence the number of patents scholars effectively invent.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Bureau d'Economie Théorique et Appliquée, UDS, Strasbourg in its series Working Papers of BETA with number 2010-06.

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Date of creation: 2010
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Handle: RePEc:ulp:sbbeta:2010-06

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Keywords: University; patent; scientific agenda; technology transfer; academic inventors.;

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  1. Carayol, Nicolas & Dalle, Jean-Michel, 2007. "Sequential problem choice and the reward system in Open Science," Structural Change and Economic Dynamics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 167-191, June.
  2. Kira R. Fabrizio, 2007. "University patenting and the pace of industrial innovation," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 16(4), pages 505-534, August.
  3. Joaquín Azagra-Caro & Nicolas Carayol & Patrick Llerena, 2006. "Patent Production at a European Research University: Exploratory Evidence at the Laboratory Level," The Journal of Technology Transfer, Springer, Springer, vol. 31(2), pages 257-268, 03.
  4. Czarnitzki, Dirk & Glänzel, Wolfgang & Hussinger, Katrin, 2009. "Heterogeneity of patenting activity and its implications for scientific research," Research Policy, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 38(1), pages 26-34, February.
  5. Nicolas Carayol, 2007. "Academic Incentives, Research Organization And Patenting At A Large French University," Economics of Innovation and New Technology, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 16(2), pages 119-138.
  6. Wesley M. Cohen & Richard R. Nelson & John P. Walsh, 2002. "Links and Impacts: The Influence of Public Research on Industrial R&D," Management Science, INFORMS, INFORMS, vol. 48(1), pages 1-23, January.
  7. Stefano Breschi & Francesco Lissoni & Fabio Montobbio, 2005. "From Publishing to Patenting : do Productive Scientists Turn into Academi Inventors ?," Revue d'Économie Industrielle, Programme National Persée, Programme National Persée, vol. 110(1), pages 75-102.
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Cited by:
  1. Meixing Dai, 2010. "External constraint and financial crises with balance sheet effects," Working Papers of BETA, Bureau d'Economie Théorique et Appliquée, UDS, Strasbourg 2010-23, Bureau d'Economie Théorique et Appliquée, UDS, Strasbourg.

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