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Privatization of Knowledge: Did the U.S. Get It Right?

  • Cozzi, Guido

    ()

  • Galli, Silvia

    ()

To foster innovation and growth should basic research be publicly or privately funded? This paper studies the impact of the gradual shift in the U.S. patent system towards the patentability and commercialization of the basic R&D undertaken by universities. We see this movement as making universities becoming responsive to "market" forces. Prior to 1980, universities undertook research using an exogenous stock of researchers motivated by "curiosity." After 1980, universities patent their research and behave as private firms. This move, in a context of two-stage inventions (basic and applied research) has an a priori ambiguous effect on innovation and welfare. We build a Schumpeterian model and match it to the data to assess this important turning point.

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File URL: http://www1.vwa.unisg.ch/RePEc/usg/econwp/EWP-1307.pdf
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Paper provided by University of St. Gallen, School of Economics and Political Science in its series Economics Working Paper Series with number 1307.

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Length: 48 pages
Date of creation: Mar 2013
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:usg:econwp:2013:07
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  8. Aghion, Philippe & Howitt, Peter, 1992. "A Model of Growth Through Creative Destruction," Scholarly Articles 12490578, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  9. Reinganum, Jennifer F., 1985. "A two-stage model of research and development with endogenous second-mover advantages," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 3(3), pages 275-292, September.
  10. Farrell, Joseph & Scotchmer, Suzanne, 1988. "Partnerships," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 103(2), pages 279-97, May.
  11. Eli Berman & John Bound & Zvi Griliches, 1993. "Changes in the Demand for Skilled Labor within U.S. Manufacturing Industries: Evidence from the Annual Survey of Manufacturing," NBER Working Papers 4255, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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