NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

NBER Working Papers by Ryan L. Lampe

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Working Papers

August 2012Do Patent Pools Encourage Innovation? Evidence from 20 U.S. Industries under the New Deal
with Petra Moser: w18316
Patent pools, which allow competing firms to combine their patents, have emerged as a prominent mechanism to resolve litigation when multiple firms own patents for the same technology. This paper takes advantage of a window of regulatory tolerance under the New Deal to investigate the effects of pools on innovation within 20 industries. Difference-in-differences regressions imply a 16 percent decline in patenting in response to the creation of a pool. This decline is driven by technology fields in which a pool combined patents for substitute technologies by competing firms, suggesting that unregulated pools may discourage innovation by weakening competition to improve substitutes.
November 2011Patent Pools and the Direction of Innovation - Evidence from the 19th-century Sewing Machine Industry
with Petra Moser: w17573
Patent pools allow a group of firms to combine their patents as if they were a single firm. Theoretical models predict that pools encourage innovation in pool technologies, albeit at the cost of innovation in substitutes. Empirical evidence is scarce because modern pools are too recent to allow empirical analyses. This article examines data on patents and innovations by new firms for a historical pool in the sewing machine industry (1856-1877) to examine effects on innovation. Contrary to theoretical predictions, this analysis suggests that pools may discourage innovation in pool technologies and shift R&D towards technologically inferior substitutes.

Published: “Patent Pools and Innovation in Substitute Technologies – Evidence from the U.S. Sewing Machine Industry” (with Ryan Lampe) http://ssrn.com/abstract=1468062. RAND Journal of Economics, 2014, Volume 44, Issue 4, pp. 757-778.

June 2009Do Patent Pools Encourage Innovation? Evidence from the 19th-Century Sewing Machine Industry
with Petra Moser: w15061
Members of a patent pool agree to use a set of patents as if they were jointly owned by all members and license them as a package to other firms. Regulators favor pools as a means to encourage innovation: Pools are expected to reduce litigation risks for their members and lower license fees and transactions costs for other firms. This paper uses the example of the first patent pool in U.S. history, the Sewing Machine Combination (1856-1877) to perform the first empirical test of the effects of a patent pool on innovation. Contrary to theoretical predictions, the sewing machine pool appears to have discouraged patenting and innovation, in particular for the members of the pool. Data on stitches per minute, as an objectively quantifiable measure of innovation, confirm these findings. Inn...

Published: “Patent Pools and Innovation in Substitute Technologies – Evidence from the U.S. Sewing Machine Industry” (with Ryan Lampe) http://ssrn.com/abstract=1468062 . RAND Journal of Economics , 2014, V olume 44, Issue 4 , pp. 757 - 778 .

Contact and additional information for this authorAll NBER papers and publicationsNBER Working Papers only

 
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