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Why Firms Form Research Joint Ventures: Theory and Evidence


  • Lars-Hendrik Röller
  • Mikhel M. Tombak
  • Ralph Siebert


The literature on research joint ventures (RJVs) has emphasized internalizing spillovers and cost-sharing as motives for RJV formation. In this paper we develop two additional explanations: product market complementarities and firm heterogeneity. We analyze a model of RJVs with asymmetric firms and differentiated products. We then test these various explanations for RJV formation using data now available through the U.S. National Cooperative Research Act. ZUSAMMENFASSUNG - (Warum Unternehmen Forschungs-Joint Ventures gründen: Theorie und Empirie) Die Literatur über Forschungs-Joint Ventures (FJVs) hat die Internalisierung von Spillovers und die Kostenaufteilung als Motive für das Entstehen von FJVs hervorgehoben. In dieser Studie werden zwei weitere Erklärungen mitaufgenommen: die Produktmarktkomplementarität und die Unternehmensheterogenität. Diese Motive werden mit Hilfe von Daten, die aufgrund des U:S:-amerikanischen "National Cooperative Research Act" verfügbar sind, getestet.

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  • Lars-Hendrik Röller & Mikhel M. Tombak & Ralph Siebert, 1997. "Why Firms Form Research Joint Ventures: Theory and Evidence," CIG Working Papers FS IV 97-06, Wissenschaftszentrum Berlin (WZB), Research Unit: Competition and Innovation (CIG), revised Oct 1997.
  • Handle: RePEc:wzb:wzebiv:fsiv97-6 Note: At the moment we only have a copy of the revised version. We apologize if this causes any complications. We are working at recreating the original.

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Nalebuff, Barry J & Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1983. "Information, Competition, and Markets," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 73(2), pages 278-283, May.
    2. David J. TEECE, 2008. "Profiting from technological innovation: Implications for integration, collaboration, licensing and public policy," World Scientific Book Chapters,in: The Transfer And Licensing Of Know-How And Intellectual Property Understanding the Multinational Enterprise in the Modern World, chapter 5, pages 67-87 World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
    3. Kamien, Morton I & Zang, Israel, 1993. "Competing Research Joint Ventures," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 2(1), pages 23-40, Spring.
    4. Jacquemin, Alexis, 1988. "Cooperative agreements in R&D and European antitrust policy," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 32(2-3), pages 551-560, March.
    5. Irwin, Douglas A. & Klenow, Peter J., 1996. "High-tech R&D subsidies Estimating the effects of Sematech," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 40(3-4), pages 323-344, May.
    6. Kogut, Bruce, 1989. "The Stability of Joint Ventures: Reciprocity and Competitive Rivalry," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 38(2), pages 183-198, December.
    7. Reinganum, Jennifer F, 1983. "Uncertain Innovation and the Persistence of Monopoly," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 73(4), pages 741-748, September.
    8. De Bondt, Raymond, 1997. "Spillovers and innovative activities," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 15(1), pages 1-28, February.
    9. Jorde, Thomas M & Teece, David J, 1990. "Innovation and Cooperation: Implications for Competition and Antitrust," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 4(3), pages 75-96, Summer.
    10. Kamien, Morton I & Muller, Eitan & Zang, Israel, 1992. "Research Joint Ventures and R&D Cartels," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(5), pages 1293-1306, December.
    11. Shapiro, Carl & Willig, Robert D, 1990. "On the Antitrust Treatment of Production Joint Ventures," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 4(3), pages 113-130, Summer.
    12. Vickers, John, 1995. "Concepts of Competition," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 47(1), pages 1-23, January.
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    Cited by:

    1. Mohnen, Pierre & Tiwari, Amaresh & Palm, Franz & Schim van der Loeff, Sybrand, 2007. "Financial Constraint and R&D Investment: Evidence from CIS," MERIT Working Papers 011, United Nations University - Maastricht Economic and Social Research Institute on Innovation and Technology (MERIT).
    2. Lhuillery, Stéphane & Pfister, Etienne, 2009. "R&D cooperation and failures in innovation projects: Empirical evidence from French CIS data," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 38(1), pages 45-57, February.
    3. Reka Horvath, 2001. "Cooperative research and firm performance," IEHAS Discussion Papers 0108, Institute of Economics, Centre for Economic and Regional Studies, Hungarian Academy of Sciences.
    4. Gamal Atallah, 2005. "Partner Selection in R&D Cooperation," CIRANO Working Papers 2005s-24, CIRANO.
    5. Schmidt, Tobias, 2005. "Knowledge Flows and R&D Co-operation: Firm-level Evidence from Germany," ZEW Discussion Papers 05-22 [rev.], ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
    6. Bruno Cassiman & Reinhilde Veugelers, 1998. "R&D cooperation and spillovers: Some empirical evidence," Economics Working Papers 328, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra.
    7. Amir, Rabah & Evstigneev, Igor & Wooders, John, 2003. "Noncooperative versus cooperative R&D with endogenous spillover rates," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 42(2), pages 183-207, February.
    8. Ki H. Kang & Jina Kang, 2009. "Does Partner Type Matter in R&D Collaboration for Product Innovation?," TEMEP Discussion Papers 200906, Seoul National University; Technology Management, Economics, and Policy Program (TEMEP), revised Aug 2009.
    9. André Spithoven & Wim Vanhaverbeke & Nadine Roijakkers, 2013. "Open innovation practices in SMEs and large enterprises," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 41(3), pages 537-562, October.
    10. Schmidt, Tobias, 2007. "Motives for Innovation Co-operation? Evidence from the Canadian Survey of Innovation," ZEW Discussion Papers 07-018, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
    11. Barros, Pedro P & Nilssen, Tore, 1999. " Industrial Policy and Firm Heterogeneity," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 101(4), pages 597-616, December.
    12. Cassiman, Bruno & Veugelers, Rainhilde, 2003. "Which firms have cooperative R&D agreements with universities? Some empirical evidence from Belgian manufacturing," IESE Research Papers D/502, IESE Business School.
    13. Silipo, Damiano B., 2008. "Incentives and forms of cooperation in research and development," Research in Economics, Elsevier, vol. 62(2), pages 101-119, June.
    14. Belderbos, Rene & Carree, Martin & Lokshin, Boris, 2004. "Cooperative R&D and firm performance," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 33(10), pages 1477-1492, December.
    15. Faria, Pedro & Schmidt, Tobias, 2007. "International Cooperation on Innovation: Empirical Evidence for German and Portuguese Firms," ZEW Discussion Papers 07-060, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
    16. Jose Polo & Néstor Duch & Martí Parellada, 2011. "University as a collaborator partner and firm's performance: Measuring behavioral additionality," ERSA conference papers ersa11p671, European Regional Science Association.
    17. Belderbos, Rene & Carree, Martin & Diederen, Bert & Lokshin, Boris & Veugelers, Reinhilde, 2004. "Heterogeneity in R&D cooperation strategies," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 22(8-9), pages 1237-1263, November.
    18. Negassi, S., 2004. "R&D co-operation and innovation a microeconometric study on French firms," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 33(3), pages 365-384, April.
    19. Colombo, Massimo G. & Grilli, Luca & Piva, Evila, 2006. "In search of complementary assets: The determinants of alliance formation of high-tech start-ups," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 35(8), pages 1166-1199, October.
    20. Spyros Arvanitis & Areti Gkypali & Kostas Tsekouras, 2014. "Knowledge Base, Exporting Activities, Innovation Openness and Innovation Performance," KOF Working papers 14-361, KOF Swiss Economic Institute, ETH Zurich.
    21. Veugelers, Reinhilde & Cassiman, Bruno, 2005. "R&D cooperation between firms and universities. Some empirical evidence from Belgian manufacturing," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 23(5-6), pages 355-379, June.
    22. Aikaterini KOKKINOU, 2010. "Economic growth, innovation and collaborative research and development activities," Management & Marketing, Economic Publishing House, vol. 5(1), Spring.

    More about this item


    Research & Development; Joint Venture; Product Market Competition;

    JEL classification:

    • L0 - Industrial Organization - - General
    • L6 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Manufacturing
    • O3 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights

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