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Science And Industry: Tracing The Flow Of Basic Research Through Manufacturing And Trade

  • James Adams
  • J. Roger Clemmons

This paper describes flows of basic research through the US economy during the late 20th century. In addition, the paper studies the effect of the flows on scientific papers in industries and fields. This article differs from others in its use of measures of science rather than technology. Together, its results present a picture of the structure of basic research flows in a modern, science-intensive economy. Basic research flows are large within petrochemicals and drugs, and within software and communications. Flows of chemistry, physics, and engineering are common throughout all industries - biology and medicine are almost confined to petrochemicals and drugs; and computer science is nearly as restricted to software and communications. In general, basic research flows are more concentrated within scientific fields than within industries. Our findings concerning the production of scientific papers indicate that the effect of a 1% change in academic R&D spillovers significantly exceeds that of industrial spillovers. In addition, within-field effects exceed effects between-fields, while within- and between-industry effects are roughly equal. It follows that scientific fields limit basic research flows more than industries do, perhaps because large firms implicitly span a range of industries.

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Article provided by Taylor & Francis Journals in its journal Economics of Innovation and New Technology.

Volume (Year): 17 (2008)
Issue (Month): 5 ()
Pages: 473-495

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Handle: RePEc:taf:ecinnt:v:17:y:2008:i:5:p:473-495
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  1. Jean O. Lanjouw & Mark Schankerman, 2004. "Patent Quality and Research Productivity: Measuring Innovation with Multiple Indicators," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 114(495), pages 441-465, 04.
  2. repec:att:wimass:9620 is not listed on IDEAS
  3. James D. Adams & J. Roger Clemmons & Paula E. Stephan, 2010. "Standing on Academic Shoulders: Measuring Scientific Influence in Universities," NBER Chapters, in: Contributions in Memory of Zvi Griliches, pages 61-90 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Keller, W., 1997. "Trade and the Transmission of Technology," Working papers 9620r, Wisconsin Madison - Social Systems.
  5. Klevorick, Alvin K. & Levin, Richard C. & Nelson, Richard R. & Winter, Sidney G., 1995. "On the sources and significance of interindustry differences in technological opportunities," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 24(2), pages 185-205, March.
  6. Glaeser, Edward Ludwig & Kallal, Hedi D. & Scheinkman, Jose A. & Shleifer, Andrei, 1992. "Growth in Cities," Scholarly Articles 3451309, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  7. Giovanni Peri, 2005. "Determinants of Knowledge Flows and Their Effect on Innovation," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 87(2), pages 308-322, May.
  8. Bresnahan, Timothy F. & Trajtenberg, M., 1995. "General purpose technologies 'Engines of growth'?," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 65(1), pages 83-108, January.
  9. Adam Jaffe & Manuel Trajtenberg, 1999. "International Knowledge Flows: Evidence From Patent Citations," Economics of Innovation and New Technology, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 8(1-2), pages 105-136.
  10. Adams, James D, 1990. "Fundamental Stocks of Knowledge and Productivity Growth," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 98(4), pages 673-702, August.
  11. Henderson, Vernon & Kuncoro, Ari & Turner, Matt, 1995. "Industrial Development in Cities," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 103(5), pages 1067-90, October.
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