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Understanding the technology market for patents: New insights from a licensing survey of Japanese firms

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  • Kani, Masayo
  • Motohashi, Kazuyuki

Abstract

This paper provides an empirical analysis of the technology market for patents in Japan, by using a novel firm-level dataset that combines a Japanese Patent Office survey titled Survey of Intellectual Property Activities, the Institute of Intellectual Property patent database, and the Licensing Activity Survey conducted by the University of Tokyo. In this paper, we use a two-step model to estimate a firm's licensing propensities; the first step estimates the determinants of potential licensors (willingness to license) and the second step identifies the factors of the actual licensing out of technology (licensing propensity). We found that a significant number of patents held by firms are not licensed out, although the owners are willing to do so. Our econometric analysis reveals that a major factor behind this technology market imperfection is the potential licensors’ difficulty in finding licensing partners.

Suggested Citation

  • Kani, Masayo & Motohashi, Kazuyuki, 2012. "Understanding the technology market for patents: New insights from a licensing survey of Japanese firms," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 41(1), pages 226-235.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:respol:v:41:y:2012:i:1:p:226-235
    DOI: 10.1016/j.respol.2011.08.002
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Motohashi, Kazuyuki, 2008. "Licensing or not licensing? An empirical analysis of the strategic use of patents by Japanese firms," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 37(9), pages 1548-1555, October.
    2. Arora, Ashish & Fosfuri, Andrea, 2003. "Licensing the market for technology," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 52(2), pages 277-295, October.
    3. Ashish Arora & Alfonso Gambardella, 2010. "Ideas for rent: an overview of markets for technology," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 19(3), pages 775-803, June.
    4. Bronwyn H. Hall & Adam B. Jaffe & Manuel Trajtenberg, 2001. "The NBER Patent Citation Data File: Lessons, Insights and Methodological Tools," NBER Working Papers 8498, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. David J. TEECE, 2008. "Profiting from technological innovation: Implications for integration, collaboration, licensing and public policy," World Scientific Book Chapters,in: The Transfer And Licensing Of Know-How And Intellectual Property Understanding the Multinational Enterprise in the Modern World, chapter 5, pages 67-87 World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
    6. Gambardella, Alfonso & Giuri, Paola & Luzzi, Alessandra, 2007. "The market for patents in Europe," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 36(8), pages 1163-1183, October.
    7. Gans, Joshua S. & Stern, Scott, 2003. "The product market and the market for "ideas": commercialization strategies for technology entrepreneurs," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 32(2), pages 333-350, February.
    8. Andrea Fosfuri & Marco S. Giarratana, 2010. "Introduction: Trading under the Buttonwood--a foreword to the markets for technology and ideas," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 19(3), pages 767-773, June.
    9. Anand, Bharat N & Khanna, Tarun, 2000. "The Structure of Licensing Contracts," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 48(1), pages 103-135, March.
    10. Lichtenthaler, Ulrich, 2010. "Determinants of proactive and reactive technology licensing: A contingency perspective," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 39(1), pages 55-66, February.
    11. Motohashi, Kazuyuki, 2005. "University-industry collaborations in Japan: The role of new technology-based firms in transforming the National Innovation System," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 34(5), pages 583-594, June.
    12. Ashish Arora & Marco Ceccagnoli, 2006. "Patent Protection, Complementary Assets, and Firms' Incentives for Technology Licensing," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 52(2), pages 293-308, February.
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    15. Maria Pluvia Zuniga & Dominique Guellec, 2009. "Who Licenses out Patents and Why?: Lessons from a Business Survey," OECD Science, Technology and Industry Working Papers 2009/5, OECD Publishing.
    16. Joshua S. Gans & Scott Stern, 2010. "Is there a market for ideas?," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 19(3), pages 805-837, June.
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    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Katia Angue & Cécile Ayerbe & Liliana Mitkova, 2014. "A method using two dimensions of the patent classification for measuring the technological proximity: an application in identifying a potential R&D partner in biotechnology," The Journal of Technology Transfer, Springer, vol. 39(5), pages 716-747, October.
    2. Zobel, Ann-Kristin & Lokshin, Boris & Hagedoorn, John, 2017. "Formal and informal appropriation mechanisms: The role of openness and innovativeness," Technovation, Elsevier, vol. 59(C), pages 44-54.
    3. de Rassenfosse, Gaétan & Palangkaraya, Alfons & Webster, Elizabeth, 2016. "Why do patents facilitate trade in technology? Testing the disclosure and appropriation effects," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 45(7), pages 1326-1336.
    4. Lee, Jong-Seon & Park, Ji-Hoon & Bae, Zong-Tae, 2017. "The effects of licensing-in on innovative performance in different technological regimes," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 46(2), pages 485-496.
    5. Gaétan de Rassenfosse & Alfons Palangkaraya & Elizabeth Webster, 2013. "Do Patents Shield Disclosure or Assure Exclusivity When Transacting Technology?," Melbourne Institute Working Paper Series wp2013n05, Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, The University of Melbourne.
    6. Torrisi, Salvatore & Gambardella, Alfonso & Giuri, Paola & Harhoff, Dietmar & Hoisl, Karin & Mariani, Myriam, 2016. "Used, blocking and sleeping patents: Empirical evidence from a large-scale inventor survey," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 45(7), pages 1374-1385.
    7. repec:oup:indcch:v:26:y:2017:i:4:p:667-688. is not listed on IDEAS
    8. repec:spr:scient:v:112:y:2017:i:3:d:10.1007_s11192-017-2451-6 is not listed on IDEAS
    9. Gambardella, Alfonso & Giarratana, Marco S., 2013. "General technological capabilities, product market fragmentation, and markets for technology," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 42(2), pages 315-325.
    10. repec:wsi:ijitmx:v:14:y:2017:i:03:n:s0219877017500158 is not listed on IDEAS
    11. Naubahar Sharif, 2018. "To License or Sell: A Study on the Patent Transaction Modes in China," HKUST IEMS Working Paper Series 2018-51, HKUST Institute for Emerging Market Studies, revised Jan 2018.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Technology market; Licensing; Patent; Japan;

    JEL classification:

    • D45 - Microeconomics - - Market Structure, Pricing, and Design - - - Rationing; Licensing
    • L22 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Firm Organization and Market Structure
    • O32 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Management of Technological Innovation and R&D

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