NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

How Do Patents Affect Research Investments?

Heidi L. Williams

NBER Working Paper No. 23088
Issued in January 2017
NBER Program(s):Law and Economics, Productivity, Innovation, and Entrepreneurship

While patent systems have been widely used both historically and internationally, there is nonetheless a tremendous amount of controversy over whether patent systems – in practice – improve the alignment between private returns and social contributions. In this paper, I describe three parameters – how the disclosure function affects research investments, how patent strength affects research investments in new technologies, and how patents on existing technologies affect follow-on innovation – needed to inform the question of how patents affect research investments, and review the available evidence which has attempted to empirically estimate these parameters.

download in pdf format
   (752 K)

email paper

Machine-readable bibliographic record - MARC, RIS, BibTeX

Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w23088

Published: Heidi L. Williams, 2017. "How Do Patents Affect Research Investments?," Annual Review of Economics, vol 9(1), pages 441-469.

Users who downloaded this paper also downloaded* these:
Budish, Roin, and Williams w21889 Patents and Research Investments: Assessing the Empirical Evidence
Curto, Einav, Finkelstein, Levin, and Bhattacharya w23090 Healthcare Spending and Utilization in Public and Private Medicare
de Rassenfosse and Jaffe w23072 Econometric Evidence on the R&D Depreciation Rate
Kyle and Williams w23068 Is American Health Care Uniquely Inefficient? Evidence from Prescription Drugs
Goldschlag, Lane, Weinberg, and Zolas w23018 Proximity and Economic Activity: An Analysis of Vendor‐University Transactions
 
Publications
Activities
Meetings
NBER Videos
Themes
Data
People
About

National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA 02138; 617-868-3900; email: info@nber.org

Contact Us