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Internationalization and evolution of application areas of an emerging technology: The case of nanotechnology

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  • Poh Kam Wong

    () (National University of Singapore)

  • Yuen Ping Ho

    (National University of Singapore)

  • Casey K. Chan

    (National University of Singapore)

Abstract

Nanotechnology patenting has grown rapidly in recent years as an increasing number of countries are getting into the global nanotechnology race. Using a refined methodology to identify and classify nanotechnology patents, this paper analyses the changing pattern of internationalization of nanotechnology patenting activities from 1976–2004. We show that the dominance of the G5 countries have declined in recent years, not only in terms of quantity, but also in terms of quality as measured by citation indicators. In addition, using a new approach to classifying the intended areas of commercial applications, we show that nanotechnology patenting initially emphasized instrumentation, but exhibited greater diversification to other application areas in recent years. Significant differences in application area specialization are also found among major nanotechnology nations. Moreover, universities are found to play a significant and increasing role in patenting, particularly in US, UK and Canada.

Suggested Citation

  • Poh Kam Wong & Yuen Ping Ho & Casey K. Chan, 2007. "Internationalization and evolution of application areas of an emerging technology: The case of nanotechnology," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 70(3), pages 715-737, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:scient:v:70:y:2007:i:3:d:10.1007_s11192-007-0309-z
    DOI: 10.1007/s11192-007-0309-z
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Michael L. Darby & Lynne G. Zucker, 2010. "Grilichesian Breakthroughs: Inventions of Methods of Inventing and Firm Entry in Nanotechnology," NBER Chapters, in: Contributions in Memory of Zvi Griliches, pages 143-164, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Martin Meyer, 2000. "Patent Citations in a Novel Field of Technology — What Can They Tell about Interactions between Emerging Communities of Science and Technology?," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 48(2), pages 151-178, September.
    3. Martin S. Meyer, 2001. "Patent citation analysis in a novel field of technology:An exploration of nano-science and nano-technology," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 51(1), pages 163-183, April.
    4. Rosenberg, Nathan, 1992. "Scientific instrumentation and university research," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 21(4), pages 381-390, August.
    5. Manuel Trajtenberg & Rebecca Henderson & Adam Jaffe, 1997. "University Versus Corporate Patents: A Window On The Basicness Of Invention," Economics of Innovation and New Technology, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 5(1), pages 19-50.
    6. Grupp, Hariolf, 1994. "The measurement of technical performance of innovations by technometrics and its impact on established technology indicators," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 23(2), pages 175-193, March.
    7. Joachim Schummer, 2004. "Multidisciplinarity, interdisciplinarity, and patterns of research collaboration in nanoscience and nanotechnology," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 59(3), pages 425-465, March.
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    Cited by:

    1. Laura I. Schultz & Frederick L. Joutz, 2010. "Methods for identifying emerging General Purpose Technologies: a case study of nanotechnologies," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 85(1), pages 155-170, October.
    2. Ching-Yan Wu, 2014. "Comparisons of technological innovation capabilities in the solar photovoltaic industries of Taiwan, China, and Korea," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 98(1), pages 429-446, January.
    3. Islam, Nazrul & Gyoshev, Stanley & Amona, Daniel, 2020. "External complexities in discontinuous innovation-based R&D projects: Analysis of inter-firm collaborative partnerships that lead to abundance," Technological Forecasting and Social Change, Elsevier, vol. 155(C).
    4. Jia Zheng & Zhi-yun Zhao & Xu Zhang & Dar-zen Chen & Mu-hsuan Huang, 2014. "International collaboration development in nanotechnology: a perspective of patent network analysis," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 98(1), pages 683-702, January.
    5. Jiancheng Guan & Yuan Shi, 2012. "Transnational citation, technological diversity and small world in global nanotechnology patenting," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 93(3), pages 609-633, December.
    6. Leila Tahmooresnejad & Catherine Beaudry, 2019. "Collaboration or funding: lessons from a study of nanotechnology patenting in Canada and the United States," The Journal of Technology Transfer, Springer, vol. 44(3), pages 741-777, June.

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