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Breaking the waves: a Poisson regression approach to Schumpeterian clustering of basic innovations

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  • Gerald Silverberg
  • Bart Verspagen

Abstract

The Schumpeterian theory of long waves has given rise to an intense debate on the existence of clusters of basic innovations. Silverberg and Lehnert have criticised the empirical part of this literature on several methodological accounts. In this paper, we propose the methodology of Poisson regression as a logical way of incorporating this criticism. We construct a new time series for basic innovations (based on previously used time series), and use this to test the hypothesis that basic innovations cluster in time. We define the concept of clustering in various precise ways before undertaking the statistical tests. The evidence we find supports only the 'weakest' of our clustering hypotheses, i.e., that the data display overdispersion. We thus conclude that the authors who have argued that a long wave in economic life is driven by clusters of basic innovations have stretched the statistical evidence too far. Copyright 2003, Oxford University Press.

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  • Gerald Silverberg & Bart Verspagen, 2003. "Breaking the waves: a Poisson regression approach to Schumpeterian clustering of basic innovations," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 27(5), pages 671-693, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:cambje:v:27:y:2003:i:5:p:671-693
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    1. Silverberg, Gerald & Lehnert, Doris, 1993. "Long waves and 'evolutionary chaos' in a simple Schumpeterian model of embodied technical change," Structural Change and Economic Dynamics, Elsevier, vol. 4(1), pages 9-37, June.
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    5. 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.
    6. Solomou, Solomos, 1986. "Innovation Clusters and Kondratieff Long Waves in Economic Growth," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 10(2), pages 101-112, June.
    7. Crepon, Bruno & Duguet, Emmanuel, 1997. "Estimating the Innovation Function from Patent Numbers: GMM on Count Panel Data," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 12(3), pages 243-263, May-June.
    8. Chris Freeman & Luc Soete, 1997. "The Economics of Industrial Innovation, 3rd Edition," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 3, volume 1, number 0262061953, September.
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