Download this Paper Open PDF in Browser

Are Joint Patents Collusive? Evidence from the US and Europe

33 Pages Posted: 20 Oct 2012  

Andrea Fosfuri

Universidad Carlos III de Madrid - Department of Business Administration

Christian Helmers

Santa Clara University - Department of Economics

Catherine Roux

University of Basel

Date Written: October 19, 2012

Abstract

We investigate whether patents that are jointly held by legally independent companies help sustain product-market collusion. We use a simple model of repeated interactions to show that joint patents can serve collusive purposes. Our model generates two testable predictions: when joint patents are held for collusive purposes, a) there is a positive relationship between the propensity to jointly own a patent and proximity in the product market; b) joint patents are associated with less licensing in the market for technology than individually owned patents, especially when firms are close product-market competitors. We construct a large, novel dataset that contains information on patents, research joint ventures, and licensing at the firm-level for the US and the EU to validate our theoretical predictions. We exploit differences in the legal regimes applicable to joint patents in the US and Europe to show that the data is consistent with our theoretical predictions.

Keywords: Joint patents, Property rights, R&D cooperation, Licensing

JEL Classification: K11, O31, O34

Suggested Citation

Fosfuri, Andrea and Helmers, Christian and Roux, Catherine, Are Joint Patents Collusive? Evidence from the US and Europe (October 19, 2012). TILEC Discussion Paper No. 2012-035; U. of St. Gallen Law & Economics Working Paper No. 2013-15. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2164222 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2164222

Andrea Fosfuri (Contact Author)

Universidad Carlos III de Madrid - Department of Business Administration ( email )

Calle Madrid 126
Getafe, Madrid, Madrid 28903
Spain

Christian Helmers

Santa Clara University - Department of Economics ( email )

500 El Camino Real
Santa Clara, CA 95053
United States

Catherine Roux

University of Basel ( email )

Basel
Switzerland

Paper statistics

Downloads
112
Rank
208,600
Abstract Views
2,547