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Environmental Policy and the International Diffusion of Cleaner Energy Technologies

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  • Elena Verdolini

    () (FEEM - Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei - and Fondazione CMCC - Centro Euro-Mediterranneo sui Cambiamenti Climatici)

  • Valentina Bosetti

    (FEEM - Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei - and Fondazione CMCC - Centro Euro-Mediterranneo sui Cambiamenti Climatici
    Bocconi University)

Abstract

Abstract Technology transfer is an important channel of technological change and sustainable development for countries with less innovative ability than technological leaders. This paper studies whether domestic environmental policies affect the inward technology transfer of cleaner innovation from abroad. We focus specifically on the power sector, for its important role in the decarbonization process, by looking at zero-carbon (renewable) and carbon-saving (efficient fossil) technologies for energy production. Using data on cross-country patent applications, we provide evidence that environmental policy contributes to attracting foreign cleaner technology options to OECD markets but not to non-OECD markets. We show that this is due to the nature of the implemented policy instruments. Market-based approaches positively impact technology transfer to both OECD and non-OECD economies, while non-market based approaches have at best only a weak effect in OECD countries. Domestic environmental policies may provide too weak a signal for foreign innovators in countries off the technological frontier. This calls for a strengthening of policy incentives for technology transfer in light of pressing climate change objectives.

Suggested Citation

  • Elena Verdolini & Valentina Bosetti, 2017. "Environmental Policy and the International Diffusion of Cleaner Energy Technologies," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 66(3), pages 497-536, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:enreec:v:66:y:2017:i:3:d:10.1007_s10640-016-0090-7
    DOI: 10.1007/s10640-016-0090-7
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Hille, Erik & Althammer, Wilhelm & Diederich, Henning, 2019. "Environmental regulation and innovation in renewable energy technologies: Does the policy instrument matter?," Annual Conference 2019 (Leipzig): 30 Years after the Fall of the Berlin Wall - Democracy and Market Economy 203482, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    2. Witajewski-Baltvilks, Jan & Verdolini, Elena & Tavoni, Massimo, 2017. "Induced technological change and energy efficiency improvements," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 68(S1), pages 17-32.
    3. Georgi N. Todorov & Elena E. Volkova & Andrey I. Vlasov & Natalya I. Nikitina, 2019. "Modeling Energy-Efficient Consumption at Industrial Enterprises," International Journal of Energy Economics and Policy, Econjournals, vol. 9(2), pages 10-18.
    4. Nesta, Lionel & Verdolini, Elena & Vona, Francesco, 2018. "Threshold Policy Effects and Directed Technical Change in Energy Innovation," CSI: Climate and Sustainable Innovation 268731, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei (FEEM).
    5. Conti, C. & Mancusi, M.L. & Sanna-Randaccio, F. & Sestini, R. & Verdolini, E., 2018. "Transition towards a green economy in Europe: Innovation and knowledge integration in the renewable energy sector," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 47(10), pages 1996-2009.
    6. Nabernegg, Stefan & Bednar-Friedl, Birgit & Muñoz, Pablo & Titz, Michaela & Vogel, Johanna, 2019. "National Policies for Global Emission Reductions: Effectiveness of Carbon Emission Reductions in International Supply Chains," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 158(C), pages 146-157.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Technology transfer; Patents; Energy technologies; Environmental policy;

    JEL classification:

    • O33 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Technological Change: Choices and Consequences; Diffusion Processes
    • O34 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Intellectual Property and Intellectual Capital
    • Q55 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Environmental Economics: Technological Innovation

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