IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/
MyIDEAS: Login to save this article or follow this journal

When birds of a feather don’t flock together: Different scientists and the roles they play in biotech R&D alliances

  • Subramanian, Annapoornima M.
  • Lim, Kwanghui
  • Soh, Pek-Hooi
Registered author(s):

    A firm's ability to produce high-impact innovations depends upon the nature of its R&D alliances as well as its composition of scientific human capital. The firm's scientific human capital is made up of its scientists, who produce valuable research outputs and who engage with the broader scientific community, thus helping the firm to integrate new knowledge from universities and other firms. In this paper, we examine heterogeneity within the firm's scientific human capital, emphasizing the distinct role of ‘bridging scientists’ who engage in two related but dissimilar scientific activities: patenting and publishing. Using a panel dataset of 222 firms in biotechnology between 1990 and 2000, we show that bridging scientists have a positive and significant impact on patent performance relative to other scientists within the firm. Looking closer at bridging scientists, we draw a distinction between Pasteur bridging scientists and Edison bridging scientists, with the latter having less of an orientation towards fundamental research. We show that both types of bridging scientists complement the focal firm's R&D alliances with other firms. However, Pasteur bridging scientists are substitutive with university R&D alliances while Edison bridging scientists are complementary. Our findings suggest that the composition of a firm's scientific human capital and its R&D alliances interact in subtle ways to impact patent performance.

    If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0048733312002636
    Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.

    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Research Policy.

    Volume (Year): 42 (2013)
    Issue (Month): 3 ()
    Pages: 595-612

    as
    in new window

    Handle: RePEc:eee:respol:v:42:y:2013:i:3:p:595-612
    Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/respol

    References listed on IDEAS
    Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

    as in new window
    1. Shanthi Gopalakrishnan & Joanne L. Scillitoe & Michael D. Santoro, 2008. "Tapping Deep Pockets: The Role of Resources and Social Capital on Financial Capital Acquisition by Biotechnology Firms in Biotech-Pharma Alliances," Journal of Management Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 45(8), pages 1354-1376, December.
    2. Andrea Schiffauerova & Catherine Beaudry, 2011. "Star scientists and their positions in the Canadian biotechnology network," Economics of Innovation and New Technology, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 20(4), pages 343-366.
    3. Carl Shapiro, 2004. "Navigating the Patent Thicket: Cross Licenses, Patent Pools and Standard Setting," Levine's Working Paper Archive 122247000000000539, David K. Levine.
    4. Lim, Kwanghui, 2004. "The relationship between research and innovation in the semiconductor and pharmaceutical industries (1981-1997)," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 33(2), pages 287-321, March.
    5. Haeussler, Carolin, 2011. "Information-sharing in academia and the industry: A comparative study," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 40(1), pages 105-122, February.
    6. Lam, Alice, 2011. "What motivates academic scientists to engage in research commercialization: ‘Gold’, ‘ribbon’ or ‘puzzle’?," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 40(10), pages 1354-1368.
    7. Dietz, James S. & Bozeman, Barry, 2005. "Academic careers, patents, and productivity: industry experience as scientific and technical human capital," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 34(3), pages 349-367, April.
    8. Roijakkers, Nadine & Hagedoorn, John, 2006. "Inter-firm R&D partnering in pharmaceutical biotechnology since 1975: Trends, patterns, and networks," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 35(3), pages 431-446, April.
    9. Lynne G. Zucker & Michael R. Darby & Jeff S. Armstrong, 2002. "Commercializing Knowledge: University Science, Knowledge Capture, and Firm Performance in Biotechnology," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 48(1), pages 138-153, January.
    10. Scott Stern, 2004. "Do Scientists Pay to Be Scientists?," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 50(6), pages 835-853, June.
    11. Albert, M. B. & Avery, D. & Narin, F. & McAllister, P., 1991. "Direct validation of citation counts as indicators of industrially important patents," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 20(3), pages 251-259, June.
    12. Furukawa, Ryuzo & Goto, Akira, 2006. "The role of corporate scientists in innovation," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 35(1), pages 24-36, February.
    13. Matthew J. Higgins & Paula E. Stephan & Jerry G. Thursby, 2008. "Conveying Quality and Value in Emerging Industries: Star Scientists and the Role of Learning in Biotechnology," NBER Working Papers 14602, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    14. Iain M. Cockburn & Megan J. MacGarvie, 2009. "Patents, Thickets and the Financing of Early-Stage Firms: Evidence from the Software Industry," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 18(3), pages 729-773, 09.
    15. Sorenson, Olav & Fleming, Lee, 2004. "Science and the diffusion of knowledge," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 33(10), pages 1615-1634, December.
    16. David Audretsch & T. Aldridge, 2009. "Scientist commercialization as conduit of knowledge spillovers," The Annals of Regional Science, Springer, vol. 43(4), pages 897-905, December.
    17. Schmiedeberg, Claudia, 2008. "Complementarities of innovation activities: An empirical analysis of the German manufacturing sector," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 37(9), pages 1492-1503, October.
    18. Bruno Cassiman & Reinhilde Veugelers, 2006. "In Search of Complementarity in Innovation Strategy: Internal R& D and External Knowledge Acquisition," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 52(1), pages 68-82, January.
    19. Henderson, Rebecca. & Cockburn, Iain., 1994. "Measuring competence? : exploring firm effects in pharmaceutical research," Working papers 3712-94., Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Sloan School of Management.
    20. Paul Almeida & Jan Hohberger & Pedro Parada, 2011. "Individual scientific collaborations and firm-level innovation," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 20(6), pages 1571-1599, December.
    21. Manuel Trajtenberg, 1990. "A Penny for Your Quotes: Patent Citations and the Value of Innovations," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 21(1), pages 172-187, Spring.
    22. Cockburn, Iain M & Henderson, Rebecca M, 1998. "Absorptive Capacity, Coauthoring Behavior, and the Organization of Research in Drug Discovery," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 46(2), pages 157-82, June.
    23. Richard R. Nelson, 2003. "On the Uneven Evolution of Human Know-How," LEM Papers Series 2003/25, Laboratory of Economics and Management (LEM), Sant'Anna School of Advanced Studies, Pisa, Italy.
    24. Hicks, Diana, 1995. "Published Papers, Tacit Competencies and Corporate Management of the Public/Private Character of Knowledge," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 4(2), pages 401-24.
    25. Jasjit Singh, 2005. "Collaborative Networks as Determinants of Knowledge Diffusion Patterns," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 51(5), pages 756-770, May.
    26. Ding, Waverly & Choi, Emily, 2011. "Divergent paths to commercial science: A comparison of scientists' founding and advising activities," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 40(1), pages 69-80, February.
    27. Klaus Brockhoff, 1992. "R&D Cooperation Between Firms---A Perceived Transaction Cost Perspective," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 38(4), pages 514-524, April.
    28. Michelle Gittelman & Bruce Kogut, 2003. "Does Good Science Lead to Valuable Knowledge? Biotechnology Firms and the Evolutionary Logic of Citation Patterns," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 49(4), pages 366-382, April.
    29. Calderini, Mario & Franzoni, Chiara & Vezzulli, Andrea, 2007. "If star scientists do not patent: The effect of productivity, basicness and impact on the decision to patent in the academic world," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 36(3), pages 303-319, April.
    30. Bercovitz, Janet E.L. & Feldman, Maryann P., 2007. "Fishing upstream: Firm innovation strategy and university research alliances," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 36(7), pages 930-948, September.
    31. Bruno Cassiman & Reinhilde Veugelers, 2002. "R&D Cooperation and Spillovers: Some Empirical Evidence from Belgium," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(4), pages 1169-1184, September.
    32. Jeffrey L. Furman & Megan MacGarvie, 2009. "Academic collaboration and organizational innovation: the development of research capabilities in the US pharmaceutical industry, 1927--1946," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 18(5), pages 929-961, October.
    33. Bozeman, Barry & Corley, Elizabeth, 2004. "Scientists' collaboration strategies: implications for scientific and technical human capital," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 33(4), pages 599-616, May.
    34. Nicholas Bloom & John Van Reenen, 2002. "Patents, Real Options and Firm Performance," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 112(478), pages C97-C116, March.
    35. David T. Robinson & Toby E. Stuart, 2007. "Financial Contracting in Biotech Strategic Alliances," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 50, pages 559-596.
    36. Baba, Yasunori & Shichijo, Naohiro & Sedita, Silvia Rita, 2009. "How do collaborations with universities affect firms' innovative performance? The role of "Pasteur scientists" in the advanced materials field," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 38(5), pages 756-764, June.
    37. Stuart, Toby E. & Ozdemir, Salih Zeki & Ding, Waverly W., 2007. "Vertical alliance networks: The case of university-biotechnology-pharmaceutical alliance chains," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 36(4), pages 477-498, May.
    38. Fabrizio, Kira R., 2009. "Absorptive capacity and the search for innovation," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 38(2), pages 255-267, March.
    39. Murray, Fiona, 2004. "The role of academic inventors in entrepreneurial firms: sharing the laboratory life," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 33(4), pages 643-659, May.
    40. Noyons, E. C. M. & van Raan, A. F. J. & Grupp, H. & Schmoch, U., 1994. "Exploring the science and technology interface: inventor-author relations in laser medicine research," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 23(4), pages 443-457, July.
    41. Alberto Galasso & Mark Schankerman, 2010. "Patent thickets, courts, and the market for innovation," RAND Journal of Economics, RAND Corporation, vol. 41(3), pages 472-503.
    42. Arora, Ashish & Gambardella, Alfonso, 1994. "Evaluating technological information and utilizing it : Scientific knowledge, technological capability, and external linkages in biotechnology," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 24(1), pages 91-114, June.
    43. Partha, Dasgupta & David, Paul A., 1994. "Toward a new economics of science," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 23(5), pages 487-521, September.
    44. Murray, Fiona, 2002. "Innovation as co-evolution of scientific and technological networks: exploring tissue engineering," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 31(8-9), pages 1389-1403, December.
    45. Zhiang (John) Lin & Haibin Yang & Irem Demirkan, 2007. "The Performance Consequences of Ambidexterity in Strategic Alliance Formations: Empirical Investigation and Computational Theorizing," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 53(10), pages 1645-1658, October.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:respol:v:42:y:2013:i:3:p:595-612. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Zhang, Lei)

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

    If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.