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Do Patents Matter for Commercialization?


  • Elizabeth Webster

    (Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, The University of Melbourne)

  • Paul H. Jensen

    () (Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, The University of Melbourne)


In this paper, we take another look at the role that patents play in determining successful commercialization. We address this issue using survey data on 3,736 Australian inventions which were the subject of a patent application between 1986 and 2005. Although almost half of the survey respondents' patent applications were not granted, many still attempted to commercialize their inventions. This variation in patenting and commercialization outcomes enables us to address the question: do patents matter for commercialization? Our results suggest that while the receipt of a patent grant had a positive and significant effect on most commercialization stages, the magnitude of the effect is quite modest. In fact, the marginal increase in the probability of attempting a commercialization stage due to the presence of a patent varies from 2.0 (export) to 8.0 (mass production stage) percentage points.

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  • Elizabeth Webster & Paul H. Jensen, 2009. "Do Patents Matter for Commercialization?," Melbourne Institute Working Paper Series wp2009n08, Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, The University of Melbourne.
  • Handle: RePEc:iae:iaewps:wp2009n08

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    Cited by:

    1. Russell Thomson & Elizabeth Webster, 2012. "The Design of R & D Support Schemes for Industry," Economic Papers, The Economic Society of Australia, vol. 31(4), pages 464-477, December.
    2. repec:spr:scient:v:94:y:2013:i:3:d:10.1007_s11192-012-0891-6 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Simon Wakeman, 2012. "How does obtaining intellectual property rights impact technology commercialization strategy for start-up innovators? Reconciling the effects on licensing vs. financing," ESMT Research Working Papers ESMT-12-03 (R1), ESMT European School of Management and Technology, revised 11 Jul 2012.
    4. repec:eee:eecrev:v:101:y:2018:i:c:p:625-642 is not listed on IDEAS
    5. Gaétan de Rassenfosse & Adam B. Jaffe, 2017. "Econometric Evidence on the R&D Depreciation Rate," NBER Working Papers 23072, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

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