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Is distance dying at last? Falling home bias in fixed‐effects models of patent citations

  • Rachel Griffith
  • Sokbae Lee
  • John Van Reenen

We examine the “home bias” of international knowledge spillovers as measured by the speed of patent citations (i.e. knowledge spreads slowly over international boundaries). We present the first compelling econometric evidence that the geographical localization of knowledge spillovers has fallen over time, as we would expect from the dramatic fall in communication and travel costs. Our proposed estimator controls for correlated fixed effects and censoring in duration models and we apply it to data on over two million citations between 1975 and 1999. Home bias declines substantially when we control for fixed effects: there is practically no home bias for the more “modern” sectors such as pharmaceuticals and information/communication technologies.

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Article provided by Econometric Society in its journal Quantitative Economics.

Volume (Year): 2 (2011)
Issue (Month): 2 (07)
Pages: 211-249

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Handle: RePEc:ecm:quante:v:2:y:2011:i:2:p:211-249
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  8. Adair Morse, 2006. "Are elite universities losing their competitive edge?," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland.
  9. Peter Thompson & Melanie Fox Kean, 2004. "Patent Citations and the Geography of Knowledge Spillovers: A Reassessment," Working Papers 0401, Florida International University, Department of Economics.
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  14. Joel L. Horowitz & Sokbae Lee, 2002. "Semiparametric Estimation of a Panel Data Proportional Hazards Model with Fixed Effects," 10th International Conference on Panel Data, Berlin, July 5-6, 2002 A5-3, International Conferences on Panel Data.
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  18. Wooldridge, Jeffrey M., 2007. "Inverse probability weighted estimation for general missing data problems," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 141(2), pages 1281-1301, December.
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  25. Peter Thompson, 2004. "Patent Citations and the Geography of Knowledge Spillovers: Evidence from Inventor- and Examiner-Added Citations," Working Papers 0405, Florida International University, Department of Economics, revised Jun 2005.
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