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The Effects of Downstream Competition on Upstream Innovation and Licensing

Author

Listed:
  • Jean-Etienne de Bettignies
  • Bulat Gainullin
  • Hua Fang Liu
  • David T. Robinson

Abstract

We study how competition between two downstream firms affects an upstream innovator's innovation strategy, which includes selecting how much innovation to produce and whether to license this innovation to one (targeted licensing) or both (market-wide licensing) downstream competitors. Our model points to a U-shaped relationship between downstream competition and upstream innovation: at low levels of competition, market-wide licensing is optimal and competition reduces innovation, while at high levels of competition targeted licensing is optimal and competition increases innovation. Empirical analysis using a large panel of US data provides clear support for these predictions linking competition, innovation and licensing.

Suggested Citation

  • Jean-Etienne de Bettignies & Bulat Gainullin & Hua Fang Liu & David T. Robinson, 2018. "The Effects of Downstream Competition on Upstream Innovation and Licensing," NBER Working Papers 25166, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:25166
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • L22 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Firm Organization and Market Structure
    • L24 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Contracting Out; Joint Ventures
    • O31 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Innovation and Invention: Processes and Incentives
    • O32 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Management of Technological Innovation and R&D

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