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Knowledge spillovers from renewable energy technologies, Lessons from patent citations

Author

Listed:
  • Joëlle Noailly

    (CPB Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis)

  • Victoria Shestalova

    (CPB Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis)

Abstract

This paper studies the knowledge spillovers generated by renewable-energy technologies, unraveling the technological fields that benefit from knowledge developed in storage, solar, wind, marine, hydropower, geothermal, waste and biomass energy technologies. A CPB Background Document accompanies this CPB Discussion Paper. Using citation data of patents in renewable technologies at seventeen European countries over the 1978-2006 period, the analysis examines the relative importance of knowledge flows within the same specific technological field (intra-technology spillovers), to other technologies in the field of power-generation (inter-technology spillovers), and to technologies unrelated to power-generation (external-technology spillovers). The results show significant differences across various renewable technologies. While wind technologies mainly find applications within their own technological field, a large share of innovations in solar energy and storage technologies find applications outside the field of power generation, suggesting that solar technologies are more general and, therefore, may have a higher value for society. Finally, the knowledge from waste and biomass technologies is mainly exploited by fossil-fuel power-generating technologies. The paper discusses the implications of these results for the design of R&D policies for renewable energy innovation.

Suggested Citation

  • Joëlle Noailly & Victoria Shestalova, 2013. "Knowledge spillovers from renewable energy technologies, Lessons from patent citations," CPB Discussion Paper 262, CPB Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis.
  • Handle: RePEc:cpb:discus:262
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Battke, Benedikt & Schmidt, Tobias S. & Stollenwerk, Stephan & Hoffmann, Volker H., 2016. "Internal or external spillovers—Which kind of knowledge is more likely to flow within or across technologies," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 45(1), pages 27-41.
    2. Geraldine Ang & Dirk Röttgers & Pralhad Burli, 2017. "The empirics of enabling investment and innovation in renewable energy," OECD Environment Working Papers 123, OECD Publishing.
    3. Gawel, Erik & Lehmann, Paul & Purkus, Alexandra & Söderholm, Patrik & Witte, Katherina, 2017. "Rationales for technology-specific RES support and their relevance for German policy," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 102(C), pages 16-26.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • O33 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Technological Change: Choices and Consequences; Diffusion Processes
    • Q42 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Energy - - - Alternative Energy Sources
    • Q48 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Energy - - - Government Policy
    • Q55 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Environmental Economics: Technological Innovation

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