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The Knowledge Production of 'R' and 'D'

  • Thorwarth, Susanne
  • Kraft, Kornelius
  • Czarnitzki, Dirk

Many studies investigate the relationship between R&D expenditures as an input and patents as an intermediate product or output of a knowledge production function. We suggest that the productivity of research in patent production functions has been underestimated in the literature, as scholars typically use information about R&D, i.e. the sum of research expenditure and development expenditure, due to data availability. However, in most industries only (applied) research will lead to patentable knowledge, and development happens after the initial research phase that may have led to a patent. Instead of using data on R&D, we separate the knowledge creating process into 'R' and 'D'. This data stems from R&D surveys of Belgian firms. It turns out that only the 'R' part of R&D expenditure has a significant effect on patents and that development expenditure are insignificant. Thus previous literature relying on R&D expenditure suffers from a measurement error, such that the coefficient of R&D is biased towards zero, as R&D includes a large fraction of irrelevant expenditure, i.e. development expenditure, with respect to patenting.

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Paper provided by ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research in its series ZEW Discussion Papers with number 08-046.

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Date of creation: 2008
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Handle: RePEc:zbw:zewdip:7356
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  1. Griliches, Zvi, 1990. "Patent Statistics as Economic Indicators: A Survey," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 28(4), pages 1661-1707, December.
  2. Blundell, Richard & Griffith, Rachel & van Reenen, John, 1999. "Market Share, Market Value and Innovation in a Panel of British Manufacturing Firms," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 66(3), pages 529-54, July.
  3. Blundell, Richard & Griffith, Rachel & Windmeijer, Frank, 2002. "Individual effects and dynamics in count data models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 108(1), pages 113-131, May.
  4. Arundel, Anthony & Kabla, Isabelle, 1998. "What percentage of innovations are patented? empirical estimates for European firms," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 27(2), pages 127-141, June.
  5. Ariel Pakes & Zvi Griliches, 1980. "Patents and R and D at the Firm Level: A First Look," NBER Working Papers 0561, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Pakes, Ariel & Griliches, Zvi, 1980. "Patents and R&D at the firm level: A first report," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 5(4), pages 377-381.
  7. Zvi Griliches, 1985. "Productivity, R&d, and Basic Research at the Firm Level in the 1970s," NBER Working Papers 1547, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Crepon, B. & Duguet, E., 1995. "Research and Development, Competition and Innovation; Pseudo Maximum Likelihood and Simulated Maximum Likelihood Methods Applied to Count Data Models with Heterogeneity," Papiers d'Economie Mathématique et Applications 95.08, Université Panthéon-Sorbonne (Paris 1).
  9. Jerry A. Hausman & Bronwyn H. Hall & Zvi Griliches, 1984. "Econometric Models for Count Data with an Application to the Patents-R&D Relationship," NBER Technical Working Papers 0017, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. repec:fth:harver:1473 is not listed on IDEAS
  11. Hall, Bronwyn H & Griliches, Zvi & Hausman, Jerry A, 1986. "Patents and R and D: Is There a Lag?," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 27(2), pages 265-83, June.
  12. Scherer, F. M., 1983. "The propensity to patent," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 1(1), pages 107-128, March.
  13. Cincera, Michele, 1997. "Patents, R&D, and Technological Spillovers at the Firm Level: Some Evidence from Econometric Count Models for Panel Data," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 12(3), pages 265-80, May-June.
  14. Wesley M. Cohen & Richard R. Nelson & John P. Walsh, 2000. "Protecting Their Intellectual Assets: Appropriability Conditions and Why U.S. Manufacturing Firms Patent (or Not)," NBER Working Papers 7552, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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