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The fruits of intellectual production: economic and scientific specialisation among OECD countries

  • Keld Laursen
  • Ammon Salter

This paper brings together data from 17 OECD countries on scientific publications, patents and production, to explore the relationship between scientific and economic specialisation for 17 manufacturing industries. Since Marx, there has been a fundamental debate in economics about the link between science and the economic system. Marx argued that the needs of production shape scientific developments and that science has become a factor of production, whereas Polanyi argued that developments in science are largely independent of the economic sphere. Using a panel data model and econometric estimations at the industry level, the paper derives some hypotheses from the two positions and finds that, while the overall evidence on the link between national production and scientific specialisation is mixed, it is important to have high levels of relevant to-the-industry scientific strength per capita in order to be specialised in science-based industries. Copyright 2005, Oxford University Press.

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Article provided by Oxford University Press in its journal Cambridge Journal of Economics.

Volume (Year): 29 (2005)
Issue (Month): 2 (March)
Pages: 289-308

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Handle: RePEc:oup:cambje:v:29:y:2005:i:2:p:289-308
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  1. Alvin K. Klevorick & Richard C. Levin & Richard R. Nelson & Sidney G. Winter, 1993. "On the Sources and Significance of Interindustry Differences in Technological Opportunities," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 1052, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  2. Gustavsson, Patrik & Hansson, Pär & Lundberg, Lars, 1996. "Technology, Resource Endowments and International Competitiveness," Working Paper Series 138, Trade Union Institute for Economic Research.
  3. Keld Laursen & Ina Drejer, 1999. "Do Inter-Sectoral Linkages Matter for International Export Specialisation?," Economics of Innovation and New Technology, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 8(4), pages 311-330.
  4. Rosenberg, Nathan & Nelson, Richard R., 1994. "American universities and technical advance in industry," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 23(3), pages 323-348, May.
  5. Nicolai J. Foss, 1996. "Firms, Incomplete Contracts and Organizational Learning," DRUID Working Papers 96-2, DRUID, Copenhagen Business School, Department of Industrial Economics and Strategy/Aalborg University, Department of Business Studies.
  6. Laursen, Keld, 1996. "Horizontal diversification in the Danish national system of innovation: the case of pharmaceuticals," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 25(7), pages 1121-1137, October.
  7. Anthony Arundel & Aldo Geuna, 2001. "Does Proximity Matter for Knowledge Transfer from Public Institutes and Universities to Firms?," SPRU Working Paper Series 73, SPRU - Science and Technology Policy Research, University of Sussex.
  8. Narin, Francis & Hamilton, Kimberly S. & Olivastro, Dominic, 1997. "The increasing linkage between U.S. technology and public science," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 26(3), pages 317-330, October.
  9. Hicks, Diana & Breitzman, Tony & Olivastro, Dominic & Hamilton, Kimberly, 2001. "The changing composition of innovative activity in the US -- a portrait based on patent analysis," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 30(4), pages 681-703, April.
  10. Keld Laursen & Valentina Meliciani, 1999. "The Importance of Technology Based Inter-sectoral Linkages for Market Share Dynamics," DRUID Working Papers 99-10, DRUID, Copenhagen Business School, Department of Industrial Economics and Strategy/Aalborg University, Department of Business Studies.
  11. Salter, Ammon J. & Martin, Ben R., 2001. "The economic benefits of publicly funded basic research: a critical review," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 30(3), pages 509-532, March.
  12. Peter Maskell, 1996. "Localised Low-tech Learning in the Furniture Industry," DRUID Working Papers 96-11, DRUID, Copenhagen Business School, Department of Industrial Economics and Strategy/Aalborg University, Department of Business Studies.
  13. Godin, Benoit, 1996. "Research and the practice of publication in industries," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 25(4), pages 587-606, June.
  14. 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.
  15. Narin, Francis & Olivastro, Dominic, 1992. "Status report: Linkage between technology and science," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 21(3), pages 237-249, June.
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