Scandinavian Working Papers in Economics

Papers in Innovation Studies,
Lund University, CIRCLE - Center for Innovation, Research and Competences in the Learning Economy

No 2015/43: What is the causal effect of R&D on patenting activity in a professor’s privilege country? Evidence from Sweden

Olof Ejermo () and John Källström ()
Additional contact information
Olof Ejermo: CIRCLE, Lund University
John Källström: CIRCLE, Lund University

Abstract: We investigate the responsiveness of academic patenting to research and development (R&D) on the subject level at Swedish universities in panel data regressions. The general responsiveness to R&D is found to be higher than corresponding estimates found in US studies, especially when we adopt instrumental variable techniques that address endogeneity in the studied R&D-to-patent relationship. We also find that this responsiveness is not associated with lower quality of patents measured in terms of citations. A higher responsiveness from R&D to patenting is found in “Information technologies”, “Chemistry (science)”, “Electrical engineering, electronics & photonics” and “Chemical engineering”, “Medicine” and in “Microbiology” than in other common patenting fields. Our main result, that academia in Sweden contributes well to inventive activity support the view that the professor’s privilege may be a contributing factor.

Keywords: research and development; patenting; academia; knowledge production functions; the professor’s privilege; Sweden

JEL-codes: C25; C26; I23; I28; O31; O32; O34; O38

25 pages, December 1, 2015

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