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Organizational Design of R & D Activities

  • Stefan Ambec

    (Universite de Montreal)

  • Michel Poitevin

    (Universite de Montreal)

This paper addresses the question of whether R&D should be carried out by an independent research unit or be produced in-house by the firm marketing the innovation. We define two contractual structures. In an independent structure, the firm that markets the innovation buys it from an independent research unit which is financed externally. In an integrated structure, the firm that markets the innovation also carries out and finances research leading to the innovation. We compare the two structures under the assumption that the research unit has some private information about the real cost of developing the new product. We find that the integrated structure dominates when an innovation costly to develop is also a less drastic technology or a product less valued by consumers. The independent structure dominates in the opposite case.

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Paper provided by Econometric Society in its series Econometric Society World Congress 2000 Contributed Papers with number 0190.

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Date of creation: 01 Aug 2000
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Handle: RePEc:ecm:wc2000:0190
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  1. Beaudry, P. & Poitevin, M., 1993. "Contract Renegotiation: A Simple Framework and Implications for Organization Theory," Cahiers de recherche 9332, Centre interuniversitaire de recherche en économie quantitative, CIREQ.
  2. Dearden, James & Ickes, Barry W & Samuelson, Larry, 1990. "To Innovate or Not to Innovate: Incentives and Innovation in Hierarchies," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(5), pages 1105-24, December.
  3. In-Koo Cho & David M. Kreps, 1997. "Signaling Games and Stable Equilibria," Levine's Working Paper Archive 896, David K. Levine.
  4. Aghion, Philippe & Tirole, Jean, 1994. "On the Management of Innovation," IDEI Working Papers 36, Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse.
  5. Bengt Holmstrom & Roger B. Myerson, 1981. "Efficient and Durable Decision Rules with Incomplete Information," Discussion Papers 495, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  6. Dosi, Giovanni, 1988. "Sources, Procedures, and Microeconomic Effects of Innovation," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 26(3), pages 1120-71, September.
  7. Robert Townsend, 1979. "Optimal contracts and competitive markets with costly state verification," Staff Report 45, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  8. Grossman, Sanford J & Hart, Oliver D, 1986. "The Costs and Benefits of Ownership: A Theory of Vertical and Lateral Integration," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 94(4), pages 691-719, August.
  9. Armour, Henry Ogden & Teece, David J, 1980. "Vertical Integration and Technological Innovation," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 62(3), pages 470-74, August.
  10. Jean-Jacques Laffont & David Martimort, 1997. "Collusion under Asymmetric Information," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 65(4), pages 875-912, July.
  11. Stewart C. Myers, 1984. "Capital Structure Puzzle," NBER Working Papers 1393, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Maskin, Eric & Tirole, Jean, 1992. "The Principal-Agent Relationship with an Informed Principal, II: Common Values," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 60(1), pages 1-42, January.
  13. Lerner, Josh & Merges, Robert P, 1998. "The Control of Technology Alliances: An Empirical Analysis of the Biotechnology Industry," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 46(2), pages 125-56, June.
  14. Myers, Stewart C., 1984. "Capital structure puzzle," Working papers 1548-84., Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Sloan School of Management.
  15. Jensen, Michael C. & Meckling, William H., 1976. "Theory of the firm: Managerial behavior, agency costs and ownership structure," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 3(4), pages 305-360, October.
  16. Aghion, Philippe & Tirole, Jean, 1994. "The Management of Innovation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 109(4), pages 1185-1209, November.
  17. Myers, Stewart C, 1984. " The Capital Structure Puzzle," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 39(3), pages 575-92, July.
  18. Qian, Yingyi & Xu, Chenggang, 1998. "Innovation and Bureaucracy under Soft and Hard Budget Constraints," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 65(1), pages 151-64, January.
  19. Beaudry, Paul & Poitevin, Michel, 1993. "Signalling and Renegotiation in Contractual Relationships," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 61(4), pages 745-82, July.
  20. Tapon, Francis & Cadsby, Charles Bram, 1996. "The optimal organization of research: evidence from eight case studies of pharmaceutical firms," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 31(3), pages 381-399, December.
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