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Greening Global Value Chains: Innovation and the International Diffusion of Technologies and Knowledge

  • Matthieu Glachant

The objective of the paper is to lay out the state of knowledge on the role of innovation and the diffusion of technologies in the greening of global value chains as well as some of the main policy issues and key research gaps1. A special emphasis will be put on developing countries in which innovation, skills and technological absorptive capacities tend to be lower while green technologies are urgently needed. The structure of the paper is extremely simple. In a first part, we give some concepts and definitions on technology, innovation, and the channels of technology diffusion. In a second part, we use various statistics (green patents, trade flows, and foreign direct investments) and illustrative examples to describe how technology and knowledge is created today and disseminated across countries. For data reasons, we mostly focus on climate-mitigation technologies, but there are good reasons to think that other green technologies do not significantly differ from the “average” climate mitigation technology. Then, we list and discuss key policy challenges (the role of environmental policies, intellectual property rights, capacity building, etc.). The conclusion summarizes the main lessons.

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File URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1787/5k483jn87hnv-en
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Paper provided by OECD Publishing in its series OECD Green Growth Papers with number 2013/5.

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Date of creation: 06 May 2013
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Handle: RePEc:oec:envddd:2013/5-en
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  1. Parello, Carmelo Pierpaolo, 2008. "A north-south model of intellectual property rights protection and skill accumulation," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 85(1-2), pages 253-281, February.
  2. Wolfgang Keller, 2001. "International Technology Diffusion," NBER Working Papers 8573, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Dechezleprêtre, Antoine & Glachant, Matthieu & Ménière, Yann, 2008. "The Clean Development Mechanism and the international diffusion of technologies: An empirical study," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 36(4), pages 1273-1283, April.
  4. Eaton, J. & Kortum, S., 1995. "Trade in Ideas: Patenting and Productivity onn the OECD," Papers 34, Boston University - Department of Economics.
  5. Richard G. Newell & Adam B. Jaffe & Robert N. Stavins, 1999. "The Induced Innovation Hypothesis And Energy-Saving Technological Change," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 114(3), pages 941-975, August.
  6. de la Tour, Arnaud & Glachant, Matthieu & Ménière, Yann, 2011. "Innovation and international technology transfer: The case of the Chinese photovoltaic industry," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 39(2), pages 761-770, February.
  7. Matthieu Glachant & Yann Ménière, 2011. "Project Mechanisms and Technology Diffusion in Climate Policy," Environmental & Resource Economics, European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 49(3), pages 405-423, July.
  8. Antoine Dechezlepr�tre & Matthieu Glachant & Ivan Haščič & Nick Johnstone & Yann Ménière, 2011. "Invention and Transfer of Climate Change--Mitigation Technologies: A Global Analysis," Review of Environmental Economics and Policy, Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 5(1), pages 109-130, Winter.
  9. Ivan Haščič & Jérôme Silva & Nick Johnstone, 2012. "Climate Mitigation and Adaptation in Africa: Evidence from Patent Data," OECD Environment Working Papers 50, OECD Publishing.
  10. Dekker, Thijs & Vollebergh, Herman R.J. & de Vries, Frans P. & Withagen, Cees A., 2012. "Inciting protocols," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 64(1), pages 45-67.
  11. Lanjouw, Jean Olson & Mody, Ashoka, 1996. "Innovation and the international diffusion of environmentally responsive technology," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 25(4), pages 549-571, June.
  12. Ockwell, David G. & Watson, Jim & MacKerron, Gordon & Pal, Prosanto & Yamin, Farhana, 2008. "Key policy considerations for facilitating low carbon technology transfer to developing countries," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 36(11), pages 4104-4115, November.
  13. Peters, Michael & Schneider, Malte & Griesshaber, Tobias & Hoffmann, Volker H., 2012. "The impact of technology-push and demand-pull policies on technical change – Does the locus of policies matter?," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 41(8), pages 1296-1308.
  14. Brunnermeier, Smita B. & Cohen, Mark A., 2003. "Determinants of environmental innovation in US manufacturing industries," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 45(2), pages 278-293, March.
  15. Verdolini, Elena & Galeotti, Marzio, 2011. "At home and abroad: An empirical analysis of innovation and diffusion in energy technologies," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 61(2), pages 119-134, March.
  16. Mancusi, Maria Luisa, 2008. "International spillovers and absorptive capacity: A cross-country cross-sector analysis based on patents and citations," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 76(2), pages 155-165, December.
  17. Jacob Funk Kirkegaard & Thilo Hanemann & Lutz Weischer, 2009. "It Should Be a Breeze: Harnessing the Potential of Open Trade and Investment Flows in the Wind Energy Industry," Working Paper Series WP09-14, Peterson Institute for International Economics.
  18. Lee, Jeong-Yeon & Mansfield, Edwin, 1996. "Intellectual Property Protection and U.S. Foreign Direct Investment," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 78(2), pages 181-86, May.
  19. Smith, Pamela J., 2001. "How do foreign patent rights affect U.S. exports, affiliate sales, and licenses?," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 55(2), pages 411-439, December.
  20. David Popp, 2002. "Induced Innovation and Energy Prices," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(1), pages 160-180, March.
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