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Research Cycles

  • Bramoullé, Yann
  • Saint-Paul, Gilles

This paper studies the dynamics of fundamental research. We develop a simple model where researchers allocate their effort between improving existing fields and inventing new ones. A key assumption is that scientists derive utility from recognition from other scientists. We show that the economy can be either in a regime where new fields are constantly invented, and then converges to a steady state, or in a cyclical regime where periods of innovation alternate with periods of exploitation. We characterize the cyclical dynamics of the economy, show that indeterminacy may appear, and establish some comparative statics and welfare implications.

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Paper provided by Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse in its series IDEI Working Papers with number 422.

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Date of creation: Nov 2006
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Publication status: Published in Journal of Economic Theory, vol.�145, n°5, septembre 2010, p.�1890-1920.
Handle: RePEc:ide:wpaper:5500
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  1. Boyan Jovanovic & Yaw Nyarko, 1994. "Learning By Doing and the Choice of Technology," NBER Working Papers 4739, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. repec:att:wimass:9707 is not listed on IDEAS
  3. Partha, Dasgupta & David, Paul A., 1994. "Toward a new economics of science," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 23(5), pages 487-521, September.
  4. Shleifer, Andrei, 1986. "Implementation Cycles," Scholarly Articles 3451303, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  5. Kiminori Matsuyama, 1999. "Growing Through Cycles," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 67(2), pages 335-348, March.
  6. Michele Boldrin & David K. Levine, 2005. "The economics of ideas and intellectual property," Staff Report 357, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  7. Arthur M. Diamond Jr., 1986. "What is a Citation Worth?," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 21(2), pages 200-215.
  8. Acemoglu, D., 1997. "Why Do New Technologies Complement Skills? Directed Technical Change and Wage Inequality," Working papers 97-14, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  9. Sanjeev Goyal & Marco van der Leij & José Luis Moraga-Gonzàlez, 2004. "Economics: An Emerging Small World?," Working Papers 2004.84, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
  10. Jovanovic, Boyan & Rob, Rafael, 1987. "Long Waves and Short Waves: Growth Through Intensive and Extensive Search," Working Papers 87-35, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University.
  11. Aghion, Philippe & Howitt, Peter, 1996. " Research and Development in the Growth Process," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 1(1), pages 49-73, March.
  12. Paula E. Stephan, 1996. "The Economics of Science," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 34(3), pages 1199-1235, September.
  13. William A. Brock & Steven N. Durlauf, 1999. "A formal model of theory choice in science," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 14(1), pages 113-130.
  14. Carmichael, H Lorne, 1988. "Incentives in Academics: Why Is There Tenure?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 96(3), pages 453-72, June.
  15. Levin, Sharon G & Stephan, Paula E, 1991. "Research Productivity over the Life Cycle: Evidence for Academic Scientists," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(1), pages 114-32, March.
  16. Black, Fischer & Scholes, Myron S, 1972. "The Valuation of Option Contracts and a Test of Market Efficiency," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 27(2), pages 399-417, May.
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