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Sequential innovation and the patent-antitrust conflict

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  • Vincenzo Denicolo

Abstract

I examine antitrust policy in a model of cumulative innovation, arguing that collusion between successive patentees (e.g. through patent pools or cross-licensing agreements) may be socially beneficial under certain circumstances, even if the patents involved are competing rather than complementary or blocking. Collusion stimulates investment in second-generation innovations, which is welfare-improving if their social returns exceed private returns. However, it discourages investment in first-generation innovations. Thus, for the pooling of subsequent patents to be beneficial, the non-appropriable returns from the second innovation must be large and it must be costly to achieve by comparison with the first. Copyright 2002, Oxford University Press.

Suggested Citation

  • Vincenzo Denicolo, 2002. "Sequential innovation and the patent-antitrust conflict," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 54(4), pages 649-668, October.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:oxecpp:v:54:y:2002:i:4:p:649-668
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    Cited by:

    1. Bondarev, Anton A., 2012. "Optimal control over a continuous range of homogeneous and heterogeneous innovations with finite life-cycles," MPRA Paper 40068, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    2. Josh Lerner & Jean Tirole, 2004. "Efficient Patent Pools," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(3), pages 691-711, June.
    3. Erkal, Nisvan, 2005. "The decision to patent, cumulative innovation, and optimal policy," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 23(7-8), pages 535-562, September.
    4. Clark, Derek J. & Konrad, Kai A., 2006. "Fragmented property rights and R&D competition," Discussion Paper Series of SFB/TR 15 Governance and the Efficiency of Economic Systems 123, Free University of Berlin, Humboldt University of Berlin, University of Bonn, University of Mannheim, University of Munich.
    5. Dequiedt, Vianney & Versaevel, Bruno, 2013. "Patent pools and dynamic R&D incentives," International Review of Law and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 36(C), pages 59-69.

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