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Does Good Science Lead to Valuable Knowledge? Biotechnology Firms and the Evolutionary Logic of Citation Patterns

  • Michelle Gittelman

    ()

    (Department of Management and Organizational Behavior, New York University, Stern School of Business, 44 West 4th Street, Tisch 7-11, New York, New York 10012)

  • Bruce Kogut

    ()

    (The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19104, and Centre de Recherche en Gestion, Ecole Polytechnique, 1, rue Descartes, Paris 75005, France)

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    This study looks at the United States biotechnology industry as a community of practice caught between two evolutionary logics by which valuable scientific knowledge and valuable innovations are selected. We analyze the publications and patents of 116 biotechnology firms during the period 1988--1995. In models that link scientific capabilities to patent citations, we show that scientific ideas are not simply inputs into inventions; important scientific ideas and influential patents follow different and conflicting selection logics. Publication, collaboration, and science intensity are associated with patented innovations; however, important scientific papers are negatively associated with high-impact innovations. These results point to conflicting logics between science and innovation, and scientists must contribute to both while inhabiting a single epistemic community. We identify individuals listed on patents and scientific papers and find they effectively integrate science with innovation, leading to more successful innovations. Our findings suggest that the role of the small, research-intensive firm is to create a repository of knowledge; to act as an organizational mechanism to combine the capabilities of versatile scientists within and outside the boundaries of the firm; and to manage the selection of scientific ideas to produce valuable technical innovations.

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    File URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1287/mnsc.49.4.366.14420
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    Article provided by INFORMS in its journal Management Science.

    Volume (Year): 49 (2003)
    Issue (Month): 4 (April)
    Pages: 366-382

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    Handle: RePEc:inm:ormnsc:v:49:y:2003:i:4:p:366-382
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    1. Lynne G. Zucker & Michael R. Darby & Jeff S. Armstrong, 2001. "Commercializing Knowledge: University Science, Knowledge Capture, and Firm Performance in Biotechnology," NBER Working Papers 8499, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Adam B. Jaffe & Manuel Trajtenberg & Rebecca Henderson, 1993. "Geographic Localization of Knowledge Spillovers as Evidenced by Patent Citations," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 108(3), pages 577-598.
    3. Rosenberg, Nathan, 1990. "Why do firms do basic research (with their own money)?," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 19(2), pages 165-174, April.
    4. Hall, Bronwyn H. & Jaffe, Adam & Trajtenberg, Manuel, 2001. "Market Value and Patent Citations: A First Look," Department of Economics, Working Paper Series qt8vh1c20f, Department of Economics, Institute for Business and Economic Research, UC Berkeley.
    5. 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.
    6. Scott Stern, 1999. "Do Scientists Pay to Be Scientists?," NBER Working Papers 7410, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. Paula E. Stephan, 1996. "The Economics of Science," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 34(3), pages 1199-1235, September.
    8. Zucker, Lynne G & Darby, Michael R & Brewer, Marilynn B, 1998. "Intellectual Human Capital and the Birth of U.S. Biotechnology Enterprises," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(1), pages 290-306, March.
    9. Audretsch, David B & Stephan, Paula E, 1996. "Company-Scientist Locational Links: The Case of Biotechnology," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(3), pages 641-52, June.
    10. David, Paul A, 1998. "Common Agency Contracting and the Emergence of "Open Science" Institutions," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(2), pages 15-21, May.
    11. Wesley M. Cohen & Richard R. Nelson & John P. Walsh, 2002. "Links and Impacts: The Influence of Public Research on Industrial R&D," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 48(1), pages 1-23, January.
    12. 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.
    13. Paul Almeida & Bruce Kogut, 1999. "Localization of Knowledge and the Mobility of Engineers in Regional Networks," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 45(7), pages 905-917, July.
    14. 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.
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