NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
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Andrea Patacconi

Andrea Patacconi, Norwich Business School
University of East Anglia, Norwich, NR4 7TJ, UK

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NBER Working Papers and Publications

June 2018Towards a Legal Theory of the Firm: The Effects of Enterprise Liability on Asset Partitioning, Decentralization and Corporate Group Growth
with Sharon Belenzon, Honggi Lee: w24720
Limited liability is a key attribute of the corporate form and one of the most important institutional innovations of the nineteenth century. However, when the owner of a corporation is another corporation as in many corporate groups, an important justification for limited liability—to protect small, passive investors from unlimited losses—is severely weakened. Accordingly, countries differ considerably in their propensity to protect parent and sister companies from the liabilities incurred by other group affiliates, with some countries (e.g. Germany) viewing a subsidiary as an integral part of the group that controls it while others (e.g. Great Britain) emphasizing the legal rather than the economic substance. In this paper, we construct a novel country-level measure of enterprise liabili...
January 2015Killing the Golden Goose? The Decline of Science in Corporate R&D
with Ashish Arora, Sharon Belenzon: w20902
Scientific knowledge is believed to be the wellspring of innovation. Historically, firms have also invested in research to fuel innovation and growth. In this paper, we document a shift away from scientific research by large corporations between 1980 and 2007. We find that publications by company scientists have declined over time in a range of industries. We also find that the value attributable to scientific research has dropped, whereas the value attributable to technical knowledge (as measured by patents) has remained stable. These effects appear to be associated with globalization and narrower firm scope, rather than changes in publication practices or a decline in the usefulness of science as an input into innovation. Large firms appear to value the golden eggs of science (as reflect...
 
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