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Technological Specialization in International Patenting


  • Jonathan Eaton
  • Robert Evenson
  • Samuel Kortum
  • Poorti Marino
  • Jonathan Putnam


Countries differ in their absolute and relative productivities in doing research across different technologies. They also differ in their propensity to adopt different technologies from abroad. Moreover, technologies may vary in their international mobility. We make use of new data on international patenting within different technologies to infer how countries specialize and which technologies are most mobile. We find countries to be much more specialized in their production than in their use of technologies, suggesting agglomeration effects in research. Innovations in chemistry and nucleonics are the most internationally mobile while those in agriculture and building are the least so.

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  • Jonathan Eaton & Robert Evenson & Samuel Kortum & Poorti Marino & Jonathan Putnam, 1998. "Technological Specialization in International Patenting," Boston University - Institute for Economic Development 81, Boston University, Institute for Economic Development.
  • Handle: RePEc:fth:bosecd:81

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Rodrik, Dani, 1991. "Policy uncertainty and private investment in developing countries," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 36(2), pages 229-242, October.
    2. Anne O. Krueger, 1989. "Asymmetries in Policy Between Exportables and Import-Competing Goods," NBER Working Papers 2904, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Samuelson, William & Zeckhauser, Richard, 1988. "Status Quo Bias in Decision Making," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 1(1), pages 7-59, March.
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    Cited by:

    1. Maria Luisa Mancusi, 2000. "The Dynamics of Technology in Industrial Countries," KITeS Working Papers 118, KITeS, Centre for Knowledge, Internationalization and Technology Studies, Universita' Bocconi, Milano, Italy, revised Nov 2000.
    2. 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.
    3. Maria Mancusi, 2001. "Technological specialization in industrial countries: Patterns and dynamics," Review of World Economics (Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv), Springer;Institut für Weltwirtschaft (Kiel Institute for the World Economy), vol. 137(4), pages 593-621, December.
    4. Daniel Nepelski & Giuditta De Prato, 2012. "Does the Patent Cooperation Treaty work? A global analysis of patent applications by non-residents," JRC Working Papers JRC79541, Joint Research Centre (Seville site), revised Nov 2012.
    5. Klinger, Bailey & Lederman, Daniel, 2006. "Innovation and export portfolios," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3983, The World Bank.
    6. Maria Luisa Mancusi, 2003. "Geographical concentration and the dynamics of countries' specialization in technologies," Economics of Innovation and New Technology, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 12(3), pages 269-291.
    7. Giuditta De Prato & Daniel Nepelski, 2012. "International patenting strategies in ICT," JRC Working Papers JRC79479, Joint Research Centre (Seville site), revised Nov 2012.

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