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Do firms face a trade-off between the quantity and the quality of their inventions?

Listed author(s):
  • de Rassenfosse, Gaétan

This paper presents evidence that firms face a trade-off between the quantity and the quality of their research output. The econometric analysis uses survey data on patent applicants at the European Patent Office and addresses the identification problem caused by differences in firms’ propensity to patent. The existence of a trade-off emphasizes the need to take the quality of research output into account when assessing research productivity. It also raises questions about the optimal quantity–quality mix that firms should target.

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File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0048733313000437
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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Research Policy.

Volume (Year): 42 (2013)
Issue (Month): 5 ()
Pages: 1072-1079

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Handle: RePEc:eee:respol:v:42:y:2013:i:5:p:1072-1079
DOI: 10.1016/j.respol.2013.02.005
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/respol

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  1. Rebecca Henderson & Iain Cockburn, 1996. "Scale, Scope, and Spillovers: The Determinants of Research Productivity in Drug Discovery," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 27(1), pages 32-59, Spring.
  2. Alexandra Zaby, 2010. "Losing the lead: the patenting decision in the light of the disclosure requirement," Economics of Innovation and New Technology, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 19(2), pages 147-164.
  3. Gaétan Rassenfosse, 2012. "How SMEs exploit their intellectual property assets: evidence from survey data," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 39(2), pages 437-452, September.
  4. Bruno Pottelsberghe de la Potterie & Nicolas Zeebroeck, 2008. "A brief history of space and time: The scope-year index as a patent value indicator based on families and renewals," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 75(2), pages 319-338, May.
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  12. Neuhäusler, Peter & Frietsch, Rainer & Schubert, Torben & Blind, Knut, 2011. "Patents and the financial performance of firms - An analysis based on stock market data," Discussion Papers "Innovation Systems and Policy Analysis" 28, Fraunhofer Institute for Systems and Innovation Research (ISI).
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  15. Zvi Griliches, 1998. "Patent Statistics as Economic Indicators: A Survey," NBER Chapters,in: R&D and Productivity: The Econometric Evidence, pages 287-343 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. Lanjouw, Jean O & Pakes, Ariel & Putnam, Jonathan, 1998. "How to Count Patents and Value Intellectual Property: The Uses of Patent Renewal and Application Data," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 46(4), pages 405-432, December.
  17. repec:adr:anecst:y:1998:i:49-50:p:11 is not listed on IDEAS
  18. Mariani, Myriam & Romanelli, Marzia, 2007. ""Stacking" and "picking" inventions: The patenting behavior of European inventors," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 36(8), pages 1128-1142, October.
  19. Guellec, Dominique & Pottelsberghe de la Potterie, Bruno v., 2000. "Applications, grants and the value of patent," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 69(1), pages 109-114, October.
  20. Hausman, Jerry & Hall, Bronwyn H & Griliches, Zvi, 1984. "Econometric Models for Count Data with an Application to the Patents-R&D Relationship," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 52(4), pages 909-938, July.
  21. James J. Anton & Dennis A. Yao, 2004. "Little Patents and Big Secrets: Managing Intellectual Property," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 35(1), pages 1-22, Spring.
  22. Gourieroux, Christian & Monfort, Alain & Trognon, Alain, 1984. "Pseudo Maximum Likelihood Methods: Applications to Poisson Models," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 52(3), pages 701-720, May.
  23. Zvi Griliches, 1998. "Issues in Assessing the Contribution of Research and Development to Productivity Growth," NBER Chapters,in: R&D and Productivity: The Econometric Evidence, pages 17-45 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  24. Kortum, Samuel & Lerner, Josh, 1999. "What is behind the recent surge in patenting?1," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 28(1), pages 1-22, January.
  25. Emmanuel Duguet & Isabelle Kabla, 1998. "Appropriation Strategy and the Motivations to Use the Patent System: An Econometric Analysis at the Firm Level in French Manufacturing," Annals of Economics and Statistics, GENES, issue 49-50, pages 289-327.
  26. Ernst, Holger, 1998. "Industrial research as a source of important patents," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 27(1), pages 1-15, May.
  27. Harhoff, Dietmar & Scherer, Frederic M. & Vopel, Katrin, 2003. "Citations, family size, opposition and the value of patent rights," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 32(8), pages 1343-1363, September.
  28. Papke, Leslie E & Wooldridge, Jeffrey M, 1996. "Econometric Methods for Fractional Response Variables with an Application to 401(K) Plan Participation Rates," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 11(6), pages 619-632, Nov.-Dec..
  29. Jean O. Lanjouw & Mark Schankerman, 2004. "Patent Quality and Research Productivity: Measuring Innovation with Multiple Indicators," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 114(495), pages 441-465, April.
  30. Karan Girotra & Christian Terwiesch & Karl T. Ulrich, 2010. "Idea Generation and the Quality of the Best Idea," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 56(4), pages 591-605, April.
  31. Lee Fleming, 2001. "Recombinant Uncertainty in Technological Search," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 47(1), pages 117-132, January.
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