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From Publishing to Patenting : do Productive Scientists Turn into Academi Inventors ?

  • Stefano Breschi
  • Francesco Lissoni
  • Fabio Montobbio

[eng] The paper presents an empirical study on the relationship between academic researchers' patenting and publishing activities, based upon a sample of patent applications and scientific papers authored by Italian university professors. By treating patents as discrete events punctuating professors' routine publishing activity over time, we conclude that no major trade-off exists: academic inventors do not publish less than their colleagues with no patents, and do not show any bias towards more applied, less basic science. On the contrary, more productive professors are more likely to end up signing one or more patents; in addition, a temporary increase in a professor's scientific productivity increases the probability of a subsequent patenting event, which suggests that patents are the by-product of fertile research projects. Former scientific collaboration with industry, in the form of co-authored papers, affects positively the probability to patent with Business companies, especially in Biology and Pharmaceutics. This evidence is in line with recent results obtained for the US. [fre] Cet article présente une étude empirique sur la relation entre les activités de dépôts de brevets et celles de publication des chercheurs académiques. Cette étude se base sur un échantillon de dépôt de brevets écrits par des professeurs d'université italiens. En traitant les brevets comme des événements discrets caractérisant l'évolution du travail de publication continu des professeurs, nous concluons qu'il n'existe pas d'arbitrage: les inventeurs académiques ne publient pas moins que leurs collègues qui ne brevètent pas. Il n'existe pas, de surcroît, de biais selon la nature plus ou moins appliquée de la recherche. En revanche, les professeurs les plus productifs ont une probabilité plus importante de déposer au moins un brevet. De même, une augmentation temporaire de la productivité scientifique d'un professeur augmente la probabilité qu'il dépose un brevet. Ces résultats laissent supposer que les brevets peuvent être considérés comme un sous-produit de projets de recherche fertiles. Enfin, les collaborations scientifiques passées avec l'industrie, observées par les publications cosignées, affectent positivement la probabilité de breveter avec une entreprise, surtout dans les biotechnologies et l'industrie pharmaceutique. Ces résultats sont conformes à ceux obtenus récemment aux États-Unis.

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Article provided by Programme National Persée in its journal Revue d'économie industrielle.

Volume (Year): 110 (2005)
Issue (Month): 1 ()
Pages: 75-102

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Handle: RePEc:prs:recind:rei_0154-3229_2005_num_110_1_3073
Note: DOI:10.3406/rei.2005.3073
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