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Links and Impacts: The Influence of Public Research on Industrial R&D

  • Wesley M. Cohen

    ()

    (Department of Social and Decision Sciences, Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15213)

  • Richard R. Nelson

    ()

    (School of International and Public Affairs, Columbia University, New York, New York 10027)

  • John P. Walsh

    ()

    (Department of Sociology, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, Illinois 60607)

Registered author(s):

    In this paper, we use data from the Carnegie Mellon Survey on industrial R&D to evaluate for the U.S. manufacturing sector the influence of "public"(i.e., university and government R&D lab) research on industrial R&D, the role that public research plays in industrial R&D, and the pathways through which that effect is exercised. We find that public research is critical to industrial R&D in a small number of industries and importantly affects industrial R&D across much of the manufacturing sector. Contrary to the notion that university research largely generates new ideas for industrial R&D projects, the survey responses demonstrate that public research both suggests new R&D projects and contributes to the completion of existing projects in roughly equal measure overall. The results also indicate that the key channels through which university research impacts industrial R&D include published papers and reports, public conferences and meetings, informal information exchange, and consulting. We also finnd that, after controlling for industry, the influence of public research on industrial R&D is disproportionately greater for larger firms as well as start-ups.

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    File URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1287/mnsc.48.1.1.14273
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    Article provided by INFORMS in its journal Management Science.

    Volume (Year): 48 (2002)
    Issue (Month): 1 (January)
    Pages: 1-23

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    Handle: RePEc:inm:ormnsc:v:48:y:2002:i:1:p:1-23
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    1. Mowery, David & Rosenberg, Nathan, 1979. "The influence of market demand upon innovation: a critical review of some recent empirical studies," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 8(2), pages 102-153, April.
    2. Klevorick, Alvin K. & Levin, Richard C. & Nelson, Richard R. & Winter, Sidney G., 1995. "On the sources and significance of interindustry differences in technological opportunities," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 24(2), pages 185-205, March.
    3. Marie Thursby & Richard Jensen, 2001. "Proofs and Prototypes for Sale: The Licensing of University Inventions," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(1), pages 240-259, March.
    4. Rosenberg, Nathan, 1992. "Scientific instrumentation and university research," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 21(4), pages 381-390, August.
    5. Jaffe, Adam B, 1989. "Real Effects of Academic Research," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 79(5), pages 957-70, December.
    6. Jeffrey I. Bernstein & M. Ishaq Nadiri, 1986. "Research and Development and Intraindustry Spillovers: An Empirical Application of Dynamic Duality," NBER Working Papers 2002, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. Adams, James D, 1990. "Fundamental Stocks of Knowledge and Productivity Growth," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 98(4), pages 673-702, August.
    8. Feller, Irwin, 1990. "Universities as engines of R&D-based economic growth: They think they can," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 19(4), pages 335-348, August.
    9. Mansfield, Edwin, 1991. "Academic research and industrial innovation," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 20(1), pages 1-12, February.
    10. Nelson, Richard R, 1986. "Institutions Supporting Technical Advance in Industry," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(2), pages 186-89, May.
    11. Rosenberg, Nathan & Nelson, Richard R., 1994. "American universities and technical advance in industry," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 23(3), pages 323-348, May.
    12. Cohen, Wesley M & Klepper, Steven, 1996. "A Reprise of Size and R&D," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 106(437), pages 925-51, July.
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