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Strategic patenting and software innovation

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  • Noel, Michael
  • Schankerman, Mark

Abstract

Strategic patenting is widely believed to raise the costs of innovating, especially in industries characterised by cumulative innovation. This paper studies the effects of strategic patenting on R&D, patenting and market value in the computer software industry. We focus on two key aspects: patent portfolio size, which affects bargaining power in patent disputes, and the fragmentation of patent rights (‘patent thickets’) which increases the transaction costs of enforcement. We develop a model that incorporates both effects, as well as knowledge spill overs. Using panel data for 121 firms covering the period 1980–99, we show that strategic patenting and spill overs affect innovation and market value of software firms, that there is a patent premium accounting for 20 per cent of the returns to R&D, and that software firms do not appear to be trapped in a prisoners' dilemma of ‘excessive patenting.

Suggested Citation

  • Noel, Michael & Schankerman, Mark, 2013. "Strategic patenting and software innovation," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 57372, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  • Handle: RePEc:ehl:lserod:57372
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    File URL: http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/57372/
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    6. Michael Noel & Mark Schankerman, 2013. "Strategic Patenting and Software Innovation," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 61(3), pages 481-520, September.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Chryssoula Pentheroudakis, 2015. "Innovation in the European Digital Single Market: The Role of Patents," JRC Working Papers JRC96728, Joint Research Centre (Seville site).
    2. Stefano Comino & Fabio Maria Manenti, 2015. "Intellectual Property and Innovation in Information and Communication Technology (ICT)," JRC Working Papers JRC97541, Joint Research Centre (Seville site).
    3. Dietmar Harhoff & Georg von Graevenitz & Stefan Wagner, 2016. "Conflict Resolution, Public Goods, and Patent Thickets," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 62(3), pages 704-721, March.
    4. repec:eee:pacfin:v:46:y:2017:i:pa:p:158-176 is not listed on IDEAS
    5. repec:wsi:acsxxx:v:21:y:2019:i:08:n:s1363919619500129 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Gandal, Neil & Régibeau, Pierre, 2014. "SSOs: Current Policy Issues and Empirical Evidence," CEPR Discussion Papers 9849, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    7. Georg Graevenitz & Stefan Wagner & Dietmar Harhoff, 2013. "Incidence and Growth of Patent Thickets: The Impact of Technological Opportunities and Complexity," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 61(3), pages 521-563, September.
    8. Gandal, Neil & Regibeau, Pierre, 2013. "SSOs: Current Policy Issues and Empirical Evidence," Foerder Institute for Economic Research Working Papers 275825, Tel-Aviv University > Foerder Institute for Economic Research.
    9. Torrisi, Salvatore & Gambardella, Alfonso & Giuri, Paola & Harhoff, Dietmar & Hoisl, Karin & Mariani, Myriam, 2016. "Used, blocking and sleeping patents: Empirical evidence from a large-scale inventor survey," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 45(7), pages 1374-1385.
    10. Stefano Comino & Fabio M. Manenti & NIkolaus Thumm, 2017. "The Role of Patents in Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs). A survey of the Literature," "Marco Fanno" Working Papers 0212, Dipartimento di Scienze Economiche "Marco Fanno".
    11. Fernandez Donoso, Jose, 2017. "A simple index of innovation with complexity," Journal of Informetrics, Elsevier, vol. 11(1), pages 1-17.
    12. repec:eee:empfin:v:51:y:2019:i:c:p:149-164 is not listed on IDEAS
    13. Hsu, Po-Hsuan & Lee, Hsiao-Hui & Liu, Alfred Zhu & Zhang, Zhipeng, 2015. "Corporate innovation, default risk, and bond pricing," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 35(C), pages 329-344.
    14. Chen, Chen & Chen, Yangyang & Hsu, Po-Hsuan & Podolski, Edward J., 2016. "Be nice to your innovators: Employee treatment and corporate innovation performance," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 39(C), pages 78-98.
    15. Heng GENG & Harald HAU & Sandy LAI, 2015. "Technological Progress and Ownership Structure," Swiss Finance Institute Research Paper Series 15-39, Swiss Finance Institute.
    16. Walsh, John P. & Lee, You-Na & Jung, Taehyun, 2016. "Win, lose or draw? The fate of patented inventions," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 45(7), pages 1362-1373.
    17. Mahdiyeh Entezarkheir, 2017. "Patent thickets, defensive patenting, and induced R&D: an empirical analysis of the costs and potential benefits of fragmentation in patent ownership," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 52(2), pages 599-634, March.
    18. Wen Wen & Marco Ceccagnoli & Chris Forman, 2016. "Opening Up Intellectual Property Strategy: Implications for Open Source Software Entry by Start-up Firms," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 62(9), pages 2668-2691, September.
    19. Ugo Pagano & Maria Alessandra Rossi, 2016. "The knowledge economy, the crash and the depression," Department of Economics University of Siena 741, Department of Economics, University of Siena.
    20. Dietl, M & Skrok, & Benalcazar, P & Gątkowski, M & Rockett, K, 2017. "Pendency and Thickets," Economics Discussion Papers 19979, University of Essex, Department of Economics.
    21. repec:spr:epolit:v:35:y:2018:i:2:d:10.1007_s40888-018-0105-7 is not listed on IDEAS
    22. Vivek Ghosal & Jiayao Ni, 2015. "Competition and Innovation in Automobile Markets," CESifo Working Paper Series 5504, CESifo Group Munich.

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    JEL classification:

    • N0 - Economic History - - General

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