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Inventor Data for Research on Migration and Innovation: A Survey and a Pilot

  • Stefano Breschi

    (CRIOS – Università Bocconi, Milan)

  • Francesco Lissoni

    (GREThA – Université Montesquieu, Bordeaux IV and CRIOS – Università Bocconi, Milan)

  • Gianluca Tarasconi

    (CRIOS – Università Bocconi, Milan)

This paper discusses the existing literature on migration and innovation, with special emphasis on empirical studies based on patent and inventor data. Other sources of micro-data are examined, too, for comparative purposes. A pilot database, based on patent filings at the European Patent Office is presented. It contains information on individual inventors, including their country of residence and of origin. Preliminary evidence suggests that immigrant inventors contribute to innovation not only in the US, but also in selected European countries, where they often rank among the most productive individuals. Data on returnee inventors to selected countries of origin suggest the phenomenon to be of limited scale, and highly subject to errors of measurement.

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Paper provided by World Intellectual Property Organization - Economics and Statistics Division in its series WIPO Economic Research Working Papers with number 17.

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Length: 37 pages
Date of creation: Jan 2014
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:wip:wpaper:17
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  1. Eric T. Stuen & Ahmed Mushfiq Mobarak & Keith E. Maskus, 2012. "Skilled Immigration and Innovation: Evidence from Enrolment Fluctuations in US Doctoral Programmes," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 122(565), pages 1143-1176, December.
  2. GianMarco Ottaviano & Giovanni Peri, 2004. "The Economic Value of Cultural Diversity: Evidence from US cities," Econometric Society 2004 North American Summer Meetings 91, Econometric Society.
  3. Bellini, Elena & Ottaviano, Gianmarco I. P. & Pinelli, Dino & Prarolo, Giovanni, 2008. "Cultural diversity and economic performance: Evidence from European regions," HWWI Research Papers 3-14, Hamburg Institute of International Economics (HWWI).
  4. Peter Thompson & Melanie Fox-Kean, 2005. "Patent Citations and the Geography of Knowledge Spillovers: A Reassessment: Reply," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(1), pages 465-466, March.
  5. George J. Borjas, 2004. "Do Foreign Students Crowd Out Native Students from Graduate Programs?," NBER Working Papers 10349, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Carsten Fink & Keith E. Maskus, 2005. "Intellectual Property and Development : Lessons from Recent Economic Research," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 7443, October.
  7. Stefano Breschi & Francesco Lissoni, 2009. "Mobility of skilled workers and co-invention networks: an anatomy of localized knowledge flows," Journal of Economic Geography, Oxford University Press, vol. 9(4), pages 439-468, July.
  8. William R. Kerr, 2007. "The Ethnic Composition of US Inventors," Harvard Business School Working Papers 08-006, Harvard Business School.
  9. Matt Marx & Deborah Strumsky & Lee Fleming, 2009. "Mobility, Skills, and the Michigan Non-Compete Experiment," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 55(6), pages 875-889, June.
  10. Jaffe, Adam B & Trajtenberg, Manuel & Henderson, Rebecca, 1993. "Geographic Localization of Knowledge Spillovers as Evidenced by Patent Citations," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 108(3), pages 577-98, August.
  11. Hall, B. & Jaffe, A. & Trajtenberg, M., 2001. "The NBER Patent Citations Data File: Lessons, Insights and Methodological Tools," Papers 2001-29, Tel Aviv.
  12. Richard Freeman, 2010. "Globalization of scientific and engineering talent: international mobility of students, workers, and ideas and the world economy," Economics of Innovation and New Technology, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 19(5), pages 393-406.
  13. Raffo, Julio & Lhuillery, Stéphane, 2009. "How to play the "Names Game": Patent retrieval comparing different heuristics," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 38(10), pages 1617-1627, December.
  14. Jennifer Hunt & Marjolaine Gauthier-Loiselle, 2008. "How Much Does Immigration Boost Innovation?," Departmental Working Papers 2008-07, McGill University, Department of Economics.
  15. Jennifer Hunt, 2013. "Are Immigrants the Best and Brightest U.S. Engineers?," NBER Working Papers 18696, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. Ernest Miguélez, 2014. "Inventor Diasporas and the Internalionalization of Technology," CReAM Discussion Paper Series 1425, Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM), Department of Economics, University College London.
  17. Kenney, Martin & Breznitz, Dan & Murphree, Michael, 2013. "Coming back home after the sun rises: Returnee entrepreneurs and growth of high tech industries," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 42(2), pages 391-407.
  18. Peter Thompson & Melanie Fox Kean, 2004. "Patent Citations and the Geography of Knowledge Spillovers: A Reassessment," Working Papers 0401, Florida International University, Department of Economics.
  19. repec:dgr:uvatin:20110112 is not listed on IDEAS
  20. Ceren Ozgen & Peter Nijkamp & Jacques Poot, 2011. "Immigration And Innovation In European Regions," Norface Discussion Paper Series 2011008, Norface Research Programme on Migration, Department of Economics, University College London.
  21. Chiara Franzoni & Giuseppe Scellato & Paula Stephan, 2012. "Foreign Born Scientists: Mobility Patterns for Sixteen Countries," NBER Working Papers 18067, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  22. Alnuaimi, Tufool & Opsahl, Tore & George, Gerard, 2012. "Innovating in the periphery: The impact of local and foreign inventor mobility on the value of Indian patents," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 41(9), pages 1534-1543.
  23. Ajay Agrawal & Devesh Kapur & John McHale, 2008. "Brain Drain or Brain Bank? The Impact of Skilled Emigration on Poor-Country Innovation," NBER Working Papers 14592, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  24. Agrawal, Ajay & Kapur, Devesh & McHale, John, 2008. "How do spatial and social proximity influence knowledge flows? Evidence from patent data," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 64(2), pages 258-269, September.
  25. Giuseppe Scellato & Chiara Franzoni & Paula Stephan, 2012. "Mobile Scientists and International Networks," NBER Working Papers 18613, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  26. Michael Roach & Wesley M. Cohen, 2013. "Lens or Prism? Patent Citations as a Measure of Knowledge Flows from Public Research," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 59(2), pages 504-525, October.
  27. Frédéric Docquier & B. Lindsay Lowell & Abdeslam Marfouk, 2009. "A Gendered Assessment of Highly Skilled Emigration," Population and Development Review, The Population Council, Inc., vol. 35(2), pages 297-321.
  28. Gnanaraj Chellaraj & Keith E. Maskus & Aaditya Mattoo, 2008. "The Contribution of International Graduate Students to US Innovation," Review of International Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 16(3), pages 444-462, 08.
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