Optimal Rules for Patent Races
There are two important rules in a patent race: what an innovator must accomplish to receive the patent and the allocation of the benefits that flow from the innovation. Most patent races end before R&D is completed and the prize to the innovator is often less than the social benefit of the innovation. We study the optimal combination of prize and minimal accomplishment necessary to obtain a patent in a dynamic multistage innovation race. A planner, who cannot distinguish between competing firms, chooses the innovation stage at which the patent is awarded and the magnitude of the prize to the winner. We examine both social surplus and consumer surplus maximizing patent race rules. We show that a key consideration is the efficiency costs of transfers and of monopoly power to the patentholder. We show that races are undesirable only when efficiency costs are low, firms have similar technologies, and the planner maximizes social surplus. However, in all other circumstances, the optimal policy spurs innovative effort through a race of nontrivial duration. Races are also used to filter out inferior innovators.
|Date of creation:|
|Date of revision:|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: |
Web page: http://www.tepper.cmu.edu/
|Order Information:||Web: http://student-3k.tepper.cmu.edu/gsiadoc/GSIA_WP.asp|
References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Kenneth L. Judd, 1998. "Numerical Methods in Economics," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262100711, June.
- Gene M. Grossman & Carl Shapiro, 1985.
"Optimal Dynamic R&D Programs,"
NBER Working Papers
1658, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Denicolo, Vincenzo, 1999. "The optimal life of a patent when the timing of innovation is stochastic," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 17(6), pages 827-846, August.
- Reinganum, Jennifer F., 1989. "The timing of innovation: Research, development, and diffusion," Handbook of Industrial Organization, in: R. Schmalensee & R. Willig (ed.), Handbook of Industrial Organization, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 14, pages 849-908 Elsevier.
- Harris, Christopher & Vickers, John, 1985. "Perfect Equilibrium in a Model of a Race," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 52(2), pages 193-209, April.
- Richard Gilbert and Carl Shapiro., 1989.
"Optimal Patent Length and Breadth,"
Economics Working Papers
89-102, University of California at Berkeley.
- Harris, Christopher J & Vickers, John S, 1985. "Patent Races and the Persistence of Monopoly," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 33(4), pages 461-81, June.
- Reinganum, Jennifer F., .
"Dynamic Games of Innovation,"
287, California Institute of Technology, Division of the Humanities and Social Sciences.
- Dasgupta, Partha & Stiglitz, Joseph, 1980. "Industrial Structure and the Nature of Innovative Activity," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 90(358), pages 266-93, June.
- Lee, Tom & Wilde, Louis L, 1980. "Market Structure and Innovation: A Reformulation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 94(2), pages 429-36, March.
- Ariel Pakes & Paul McGuire, 1992.
"Computing Markov Perfect Nash Equilibria: Numerical Implications of a Dynamic Differentiated Product Model,"
NBER Technical Working Papers
0119, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Ariel Pakes & Paul McGuire, 1994. "Computing Markov-Perfect Nash Equilibria: Numerical Implications of a Dynamic Differentiated Product Model," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 25(4), pages 555-589, Winter.
- Ariel Pakes & Paul McGuire, 1992. "Computing Markov perfect Nash equilibria: numerical implications of a dynamic differentiated product model," Discussion Paper / Institute for Empirical Macroeconomics 58, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
- Fudenberg, Drew & Gilbert, Richard & Stiglitz, Joseph & Tirole, Jean, 1983. "Preemption, leapfrogging and competition in patent races," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 3-31, June.
- Kenneth L. Judd, 2003.
"Closed-loop equilibrium in a multi-stage innovation race,"
Springer, vol. 21(2), pages 673-695, 03.
- Kenneth L. Judd, 1985. "Closed-Loop Equilibrium in a Multi-Stage Innovation Race," Discussion Papers 647, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
- Paul Klemperer, 1990.
"How Broad Should the Scope of Patent Protection Be?,"
RAND Journal of Economics,
The RAND Corporation, vol. 21(1), pages 113-130, Spring.
- Klemperer, Paul, 1990. "How Broad Should the Scope of Patent Protection Be?," CEPR Discussion Papers 392, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Hopenhayn, Hugo A & Mitchell, Matthew F, 2001. "Innovation Variety and Patent Breadth," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 32(1), pages 152-66, Spring.
- Dasgupta, Partha, 1988. "Patents, Priority and Imitation or, the Economics of Races and Waiting Games," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 98(389), pages 66-80, March.
- Harris, Christopher & Vickers, John, 1987. "Racing with Uncertainty," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 54(1), pages 1-21, January.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:cmu:gsiawp:1327023263. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Steve Spear)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.