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Fragmented property rights and R&D competition

  • Clark, Derek J.
  • Konrad, Kai A.

Where product innovation requires several complementary patents, fragmented property rights can be a factor that limits firms’ willingness to invest in the development and commercialization of new products. This paper studies multiple simultaneous R&D contests for complementary patents and how they interact with patent portfolios that firms may have acquired already. We also consider how this interaction and the intensity of the contests depends on the type of patent trade regimes and the product market equilibria that result from these regimes. We solve for the contest equilibria and show that the multiple patent product involves an important hold-up problem that considerably reduces the overall contest effort.

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Paper provided by Free University of Berlin, Humboldt University of Berlin, University of Bonn, University of Mannheim, University of Munich in its series Discussion Paper Series of SFB/TR 15 Governance and the Efficiency of Economic Systems with number 123.

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Date of creation: Jun 2006
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Handle: RePEc:trf:wpaper:123
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  1. Carl Shapiro, 2004. "Navigating the Patent Thicket: Cross Licenses, Patent Pools and Standard Setting," Levine's Working Paper Archive 122247000000000539, David K. Levine.
  2. Lerner, Josh & Tirole, Jean, 2003. "Efficient Patent Pools," IDEI Working Papers 211, Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse.
  3. Glenn C. Loury, 1976. "Market Structure and Innovation," Discussion Papers 256, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  4. Baye, Michael R. & Hoppe, Heidrun C., 2003. "The strategic equivalence of rent-seeking, innovation, and patent-race games," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 44(2), pages 217-226, August.
  5. Nti, Kofi O, 1997. "Comparative Statics of Contests and Rent-Seeking Games," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 38(1), pages 43-59, February.
  6. Skaperdas, Stergios, 1996. "Contest Success Functions," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 7(2), pages 283-90, February.
  7. Rosemarie Ham Ziedonis, 2004. "Don't Fence Me In: Fragmented Markets for Technology and the Patent Acquisition Strategies of Firms," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 50(6), pages 804-820, June.
  8. Vincenzo Denicolo, 2002. "Sequential innovation and the patent-antitrust conflict," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 54(4), pages 649-668, October.
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