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International Patent Strategies of Small and Large Firms: An Empirical Study of Nanotechnology


  • Andrea Fernández-Ribas


The aim of this article is to investigate to what extent small-firm foreign patents differ from those of their larger counterparts. The research setting consists of the population of U.S.-owned small and large businesses with patent applications at the World International Patent Organization during 1996-2006 in the emerging field of nanotechnology. Findings reveal a significant and growing contribution of small firms to the globalization of patents. The analysis also suggests that small-firm patents tend to be more novel and embedded in domestic innovation networks than large-firm patents. Policy implications are multiple, including putting international patenting on the policy agenda and helping highly innovative small companies to explore foreign commercial opportunities in new markets of capital and technology. Copyright 2010 by The Policy Studies Organization.

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  • Andrea Fernández-Ribas, 2010. "International Patent Strategies of Small and Large Firms: An Empirical Study of Nanotechnology," Review of Policy Research, Policy Studies Organization, vol. 27(4), pages 457-473, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:revpol:v:27:y:2010:i:4:p:457-473

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Wipo, 2015. "World Intellectual Property Report 2015 - Breakthrough Innovation and Economic Growth," WIPO Economics & Statistics Series, World Intellectual Property Organization - Economics and Statistics Division, number 2015:944, October.
    2. Birgit Aschhoff & Georg Licht & Paula Schliessler, 2013. "Who drives smart growth? The contribution of small and young firms to inventions in sustainable technologies," WWWforEurope Working Papers series 47, WWWforEurope.
    3. Patrick Grüning, 2017. "Heterogeneity in the Internationalization of R&D: Implications for Anomalies in Finance and Macroeconomics," Bank of Lithuania Occasional Paper Series 16, Bank of Lithuania.
    4. Miguelez Ernest, 2014. "Inventor Diasporas And The Internationalization Of Technology," ERSA conference papers ersa14p1030, European Regional Science Association.

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