IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Incomplete Appropriability of R&D and the Role of Strategies and Cultural Factors in International Trade: A Japanese Case


  • Ryuzo Sato
  • Rama Ramachandran
  • Shunichi Tsutsui


One of the proudest achievements of classical and neoclassical economics is the derivation of the superiority of free trade. This result is obtained by assuming constant returns to scale, perfect competition and absence of externalities. The recent realization that the incomplete appropriability of R&D is a main source of externalities and hence the effect of R&D on national welfare is potentially subject to strategic manipulations necessitates a careful examination of these assumptions. This paper discusses R&D and diffusion of technology in international trade from two different perspectives. In Section II, we consider the role of cultural, social and historical factors in the appropriation of technology by reviewing how Japan has appropriated foreign technology. In Section III, we survey three strategic trade models to obtain some insights into the role of R&D and diffusion of technology in the context of imperfect competition. The issues we discuss include the effectiveness of R&D polices by a national government and the impact of R&D policies and diffusion of technology on the incentive to do R&D and on the outcome of trade.

Suggested Citation

  • Ryuzo Sato & Rama Ramachandran & Shunichi Tsutsui, 1991. "Incomplete Appropriability of R&D and the Role of Strategies and Cultural Factors in International Trade: A Japanese Case," NBER Working Papers 3797, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:3797
    Note: ITI IFM

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Myllyntaus, Timo, 1990. "The Finnish Model of Technology Transfer," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 38(3), pages 625-643, April.
    2. Jeffrey I. Bernstein & M. Ishaq Nadiri, 1989. "Research and Development and Intra-industry Spillovers: An Empirical Application of Dynamic Duality," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 56(2), pages 249-267.
    3. Deolalikar, Anil B & Evenson, Robert E, 1989. "Technology Production and Technology Purchase in Indian Industry: An Econometric Analysis," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 71(4), pages 689-692, November.
    4. Barbara J. Spencer & James A. Brander, 1983. "International R & D Rivalry and Industrial Strategy," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 50(4), pages 707-722.
    5. Kenneth Arrow, 1962. "Economic Welfare and the Allocation of Resources for Invention," NBER Chapters,in: The Rate and Direction of Inventive Activity: Economic and Social Factors, pages 609-626 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Barbara J. Spencer & James A. Brander, 1982. "Tariff Protection and Imperfect Competition," Working Papers 517, Queen's University, Department of Economics.
    7. Fung, K C, 1989. "Tariffs, Quotas, and International Oligopoly," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 41(4), pages 749-757, October.
    8. Kreps, David M. & Wilson, Robert, 1982. "Reputation and imperfect information," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 27(2), pages 253-279, August.
    9. Krugman, Paul R, 1987. "Is Free Trade Passe?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 1(2), pages 131-144, Fall.
    10. Dixit, Avinash, 1984. "International Trade Policy for Oligopolistic Industries," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 94(376a), pages 1-16, Supplemen.
    11. Levinsohn, James A., 1989. "Strategic trade policy when firms can invest abroad: When are tariffs and quotas equivalent?," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(1-2), pages 129-146, August.
    12. Brander, James A. & Spencer, Barbara J., 1985. "Export subsidies and international market share rivalry," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(1-2), pages 83-100, February.
    13. Clemenz, Gerhard, 1990. "International R&D competition and trade policy," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 28(1-2), pages 93-113, February.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:3797. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.