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CESIS - Centre of Excellence for Science and Innovation Studies, Royal Institute of Technology KTH/CESIS Working Paper Series in Economics and Institutions of Innovation

No 287:
Are Research Spin-Offs More Innovative? Evidence from a Matching Analysis

Andreas Stephan

Abstract: The purpose of the paper is to analyze whether research spin-offs, that is, spinoffs from either research institutes or universities, have greater innovation capabilities than comparable knowledge-intensive firms created in other ways. Using a sample of about 1,800 firms from high-innovative sectors, propensity score matching is used to create a sample of control firms that are comparable to the group of spin-offs. The paper provides evidence that the investigated 123 research spin-offs have more patent applications and more radical product innovations on average compared to similar firms. The results also show that research spin-offs’ superior innovation performance can be explained by their high level of research cooperation activities and by location effects. Being located in an urban region and proximity to parent institutions is conducive for innovation productivity.

Keywords: Spin-Offs; Innovation Performance; Propensity Score Matching; Locational Factors; Cooperation; (follow links to similar papers)

JEL-Codes: M13; O18; R30; (follow links to similar papers)

25 pages, November 5, 2012

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