Catching up and falling behind in technological progress: the experience of the textile and chemical industries in Italy between 1904 and 1937
We estimate the stocks of patents and their growth rates in the Italian textile and chemical industries between 1904 and 1937. The stocks and growth rates by nationality are estimated for Italy, France, Germany, the UK, Switzerland, and the USA. The Italian patent stock in the textile industry followed and attempted to catch up with the stock of the leading countries; by contrast, that in the chemical industry fell behind during that period. Although growth rates were similar, Italyfs growth rates fell into the lower group before and after World War I. Our results indicate that not all Italian industries succeeded in catching up with the leading countries.
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