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Weak Property Rights and hold-up in R&D


  • Bharant N. Anand


  • Alexander Galetovic



We study how the sequence of financing of R&D finance varies according to the ease with which property rights over knowledge can be defined. There are two financiers, a venture capitalist and a corporation. The knowledge acquired in costly research becomes embodied in the researcher’s human capital, and it may hold up the financier and walk away with the project to develop it elsewhere. The main results are: (a) When property rights are strong, research is always funded by the VC; development is performed e¢ciently; and breakaways from the VC to the corporation are observed in equilibrium. (b) When property rights are weak, projects may be financed by the VC or the corporation, or may remain unfunded. (c) When property rights are weak no breakaways occur in equilibrium; local spillovers and strong product market competition increase the likelihood that research projects will get funding. (d) The equilibrium sequence of R&D finance need not be first-best efficient. (e) In equilibrium, and controlling for the strength of property rights, VCs finance projects that are more profitable on average.

Suggested Citation

  • Bharant N. Anand & Alexander Galetovic, 1998. "Weak Property Rights and hold-up in R&D," Documentos de Trabajo 39, Centro de Economía Aplicada, Universidad de Chile.
  • Handle: RePEc:edj:ceauch:39

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Masako Ueda, 2000. "Bank versus venture capital," Economics Working Papers 522, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra.
    2. Sergei Guriev & Sudipto Bhattacharya, 2008. "Control Rights over Intellectual Property: Corporate Venturing and Bankruptcy Regimes," FMG Discussion Papers dp618, Financial Markets Group.
    3. Sudipto Bhattacharya & Sergei Guriev, 2006. "Patents vs. Trade Secrets: Knowledge Licensing and Spillover," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 4(6), pages 1112-1147, December.
    4. Orman, Cuneyt, 2015. "Organization of innovation and capital markets," The North American Journal of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 33(C), pages 94-114.
    5. Hellmann, Thomas & Thiele, Veikko, 2015. "Friends or foes? The interrelationship between angel and venture capital markets," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 115(3), pages 639-653.
    6. Luca Colombo & Herbert Dawid & Kordian Kabus, 2012. "When do thick venture capital markets foster innovation? An evolutionary analysis," Journal of Evolutionary Economics, Springer, vol. 22(1), pages 79-108, January.
    7. Bronwyn Hall, 2004. "The financing of research and development," Chapters,in: Financial Systems, Corporate Investment in Innovation, and Venture Capital, chapter 2 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    8. Hyytinen, Ari & Pajarinen, Mika, 2002. "Small Business Finance in Finland. A Descriptive Study," Discussion Papers 812, The Research Institute of the Finnish Economy.
    9. Colombo, Luca & Dawid, Herbert, 2016. "Complementary assets, start-ups and incentives to innovate," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 44(C), pages 177-190.
    10. repec:nbr:nberch:3051 is not listed on IDEAS
    11. Stefan ARPING, 2002. "Cannibalization & Incentives in Venture Financing," Cahiers de Recherches Economiques du Département d'Econométrie et d'Economie politique (DEEP) 02.07, Université de Lausanne, Faculté des HEC, DEEP, revised May 2002.
    12. Andres Almazan & Javier Suarez & Sheridan Titman, 2009. "Firms' Stakeholders and the Costs of Transparency," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 18(3), pages 871-900, September.
    13. Goldfarb, Brent & Henrekson, Magnus, 2001. "Bottom-Up vs. Top-Down Policies towards the Commercialization of University Intellectual Property," SSE/EFI Working Paper Series in Economics and Finance 463, Stockholm School of Economics, revised 26 May 2002.
    14. Joshua Gans & Scott Stern, 2003. "When does funding research by smaller firms bear fruit?: Evidence from the SBIR program," Economics of Innovation and New Technology, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 12(4), pages 361-384.
    15. Cuneyt Orman, 2010. "Organization of Innovation and Capital Markets (Teknolojik Yeniligin Orgutlenmesi ve Sermaye Piyasalari)," Working Papers 1010, Research and Monetary Policy Department, Central Bank of the Republic of Turkey.
    16. Iain Cockburn & Rebecca Henderson & Scott Stern, 1999. "Balancing Incentives: The Tension Between Basic and Applied Research," NBER Working Papers 6882, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    17. Carolin Haeussler & Matthew J. Higgins, 2012. "Explaining Preferences for Control Rights in Strategic Alliances: A Property Rights and Capabilities Perspective Approach," NBER Working Papers 18364, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    18. Colombo, Luca & Dawid, Herbert & Piva, Mariacristina & Vivarelli, Marco, 2013. "Does Easy Start-Up Formation Hamper Incumbents' R&D Investment? A Theoretical and Empirical Analysis," IZA Discussion Papers 7302, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).

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