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Labor Mobility Of Scientists, Technological Diffusion, And The Firm’S Patenting Decision

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  • Jinyoung Kim
  • Gerald Marschke

Abstract

We develop and test a model of the patenting and R&D decisions of an innovating firm whose scientist-employees sometime quit to join or start a rival. In our model, the innovating firm patents to protect itself from its employees. We show theoretically that the risk of a scientist's departure reduces the firm’s R&D expenditures and raises its propensity to patent an innovation. We find evidence from firm-level panel data that is consistent with this latter result. Our results suggest that scientists' turnover is associated with cross-industry patenting variation and with recent economy-wide increases in patenting. Scientists’ turnover may also partly account for why small firms have high patent-R&D ratios

Suggested Citation

  • Jinyoung Kim & Gerald Marschke, 2004. "Labor Mobility Of Scientists, Technological Diffusion, And The Firm’S Patenting Decision," Econometric Society 2004 Far Eastern Meetings 586, Econometric Society.
  • Handle: RePEc:ecm:feam04:586
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Pakes, Ariel & Nitzan, Shmuel, 1983. "Optimum Contracts for Research Personnel, Research Employment, and the Establishment of "Rival" Enterprises," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 1(4), pages 345-365, October.
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    4. Kortum, Samuel & Lerner, Josh, 1998. "Stronger protection or technological revolution: what is behind the recent surge in patenting?," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 48(1), pages 247-304, June.
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    Cited by:

    1. Jinyoung Kim & Sangjoon John Lee & Gerald Marschke, 2009. "International Knowledge Flows: Evidence from an Inventor-Firm Matched Data Set," NBER Chapters,in: Science and Engineering Careers in the United States: An Analysis of Markets and Employment, pages 321-348 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Heski Bar-Isaac & Ian Jewitt & Clare Leaver, 2007. "Information and Human Capital Managment," Working Papers 07-28, New York University, Leonard N. Stern School of Business, Department of Economics.
    3. Ann-Kathrine Ejsing & Ulrich Kaiser & Hans Christian Kongsted & Keld Laursen, 2013. " The Role of University Scientist Mobility for Industrial Innovation," Working Papers 332, University of Zurich, Department of Business Administration (IBW).
    4. Hans K. Hvide & Eirik Gaard Kristiansen, 2012. "Management of Knowledge Workers," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 55(4), pages 815-838.
    5. Bram Timmermans & Ron Boschma, 2014. "The effect of intra- and inter-regional labour mobility on plant performance in Denmark: the significance of related labour inflows," Journal of Economic Geography, Oxford University Press, vol. 14(2), pages 289-311.
    6. Aloña Martiarena, 2012. "Mobility of Skills and Ideas," DRUID Working Papers 12-04, DRUID, Copenhagen Business School, Department of Industrial Economics and Strategy/Aalborg University, Department of Business Studies.
    7. Baltzopoulos, Apostolos & Braunerhjelm, Pontus & Tikoudis, Ioannis, 2012. "Spin-off: Individual, Firm, Industry and Regional Determinants," Working Paper Series in Economics and Institutions of Innovation 265, Royal Institute of Technology, CESIS - Centre of Excellence for Science and Innovation Studies.
    8. Matt Marx & Lee Fleming, 2012. "Non-compete Agreements: Barriers to Entry…and Exit?," NBER Chapters,in: Innovation Policy and the Economy, Volume 12, pages 39-64 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. Burak Dindaroglu, 2010. "Intra-Industry Knowledge Spillovers and Scientific Labor Mobility," Discussion Papers 10-01, University at Albany, SUNY, Department of Economics.
    10. Baltzopoulos, Apostolos, 2009. "The Firm and the Region as Breeding Grounds for Entrepreneurs," Working Paper Series in Economics and Institutions of Innovation 189, Royal Institute of Technology, CESIS - Centre of Excellence for Science and Innovation Studies.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Labor market for scientists and engineers; patents; research and development; job turnover; mobility of scientists; technological diffusion;

    JEL classification:

    • J63 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Turnover; Vacancies; Layoffs
    • O32 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Management of Technological Innovation and R&D
    • O34 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Intellectual Property and Intellectual Capital

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