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Institutional Change and Academic Patenting: French Universities and the Innovation Act of the 1999

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  • Antonio Della Malva
  • Francesco Lissoni
  • Patrick Llerena

Abstract

Recent empirical work in the field of university-industry technology transfer has stressed the importance of IPR-related reforms and university patenting has major forces behind the success of US high-tech industry. European policy-makers have been tempted to explain the poorer technological performance of their countries with the lower propensity of their academic institutions to get engaged in patenting and commercializing their research results. As a consequence, a number of measures have been taken to promote academic awareness of IPRs, as part of more comprehensive policies in favour of academic commercialization and entrepreneurship. This paper explores university patenting, and the related policies, in France. We provide evidence that university patenting in that countries has been underestimated by policy-makers’ perceptions: French academic scientists are in fact responsible for no less than 3% of patents by French inventors at the European Patent Office. However, only 10% of academic-invented patents are owned by domestic universities, with the remainder assigned both to firms and to Public Research Organizations (PROs). We then explore the impact of the Innovation Act, passed in France in 1999. We find that the Act has significantly increased the likelihood an academic patent to be assigned to a university rather than to a business company. We also find, that the opening of a technology transfer office in a university appears to have a stronger and more significant impact than the Act on the decision of universities to retain IPRs over their scientists’ discoveries.

Suggested Citation

  • Antonio Della Malva & Francesco Lissoni & Patrick Llerena, 2008. "Institutional Change and Academic Patenting: French Universities and the Innovation Act of the 1999," Working Papers of BETA 2008-09, Bureau d'Economie Théorique et Appliquée, UDS, Strasbourg.
  • Handle: RePEc:ulp:sbbeta:2008-09
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Feller, Irwin, 1990. "Universities as engines of R&D-based economic growth: They think they can," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 19(4), pages 335-348, August.
    2. Francesco Lissoni, 2008. "Academic inventors as brokers: An exploratory analysis of the KEINS database," KITeS Working Papers 213, KITeS, Centre for Knowledge, Internationalization and Technology Studies, Universita' Bocconi, Milano, Italy, revised Jan 2008.
    3. Francesco Lissoni & Patrick Llerena & Maureen McKelvey & Bulat Sanditov, 2008. "Academic patenting in Europe: new evidence from the KEINS database," Research Evaluation, Oxford University Press, vol. 17(2), pages 87-102, June.
    4. Sampat, Bhaven N. & Mowery, David C. & Ziedonis, Arvids A., 2003. "Changes in university patent quality after the Bayh-Dole act: a re-examination," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 21(9), pages 1371-1390, November.
    5. Richard Jensen & Marie Thursby, 1998. "Proofs and Prototypes for Sale: The Tale of University Licensing," NBER Working Papers 6698, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. repec:fth:harver:1473 is not listed on IDEAS
    7. David J. Teece, 2008. "Technology and Technology Transfer: Mansfieldian Inspirations and Subsequent Developments," World Scientific Book Chapters,in: The Transfer And Licensing Of Know-How And Intellectual Property Understanding the Multinational Enterprise in the Modern World, chapter 4, pages 47-63 World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
    8. Maryann Feldman & Pierre Desrochers, 2003. "Research Universities and Local Economic Development: Lessons from the History of the Johns Hopkins University," Industry and Innovation, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 10(1), pages 5-24.
    9. Mowery, David C. & Ziedonis, Arvids A., 2002. "Academic patent quality and quantity before and after the Bayh-Dole act in the United States," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 31(3), pages 399-418, March.
    10. Zvi Griliches, 1998. "Patent Statistics as Economic Indicators: A Survey," NBER Chapters,in: R&D and Productivity: The Econometric Evidence, pages 287-343 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    11. Joaquín Azagra-Caro & Nicolas Carayol & Patrick Llerena, 2006. "Patent Production at a European Research University: Exploratory Evidence at the Laboratory Level," The Journal of Technology Transfer, Springer, vol. 31(2), pages 257-268, March.
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    Cited by:

    1. Dirk Czarnitzki & Katrin Hussinger & Cédric Schneider, 2012. "The nexus between science and industry: evidence from faculty inventions," The Journal of Technology Transfer, Springer, vol. 37(5), pages 755-776, October.
    2. Geuna, Aldo & Rossi, Federica, 2011. "Changes to university IPR regulations in Europe and the impact on academic patenting," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 40(8), pages 1068-1076, October.
    3. Pluvia Zuniga, 2011. "The State of Patenting at Research Institutions in Developing Countries: Policy Approaches and Practices," WIPO Economic Research Working Papers 04, World Intellectual Property Organization - Economics and Statistics Division, revised Dec 2011.
    4. Claudia Curi & Cinzia Daraio & Patrick Llerena, 2012. "University technology transfer: how (in)efficient are French universities?," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 36(3), pages 629-654.
    5. Paola Giuri & Federico Munari & Martina Pasquini, 2013. "What Determines University Patent Commercialization? Empirical Evidence on the Role of IPR Ownership," Industry and Innovation, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 20(5), pages 488-502, July.
    6. Francesco LISSONI (GREThA, CNRS, UMR 5113) & Michele PEZZONI (KITeS, University of Bocconi) & Bianca POTI (CERIS-CNR) & Sandra ROMAGNOSI (Parco Scientifico Università Tor Vergata), 2012. "University autonomy, IP legislation and academic patenting: Italy, 1996-2007," Cahiers du GREThA 2012-26, Groupe de Recherche en Economie Théorique et Appliquée.
    7. repec:wip:wpaper:4 is not listed on IDEAS

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • L31 - Industrial Organization - - Nonprofit Organizations and Public Enterprise - - - Nonprofit Institutions; NGOs; Social Entrepreneurship
    • O31 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Innovation and Invention: Processes and Incentives
    • O34 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Intellectual Property and Intellectual Capital

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