Patents and R and D at the Firm Level: A First Look

35 Pages Posted: 25 Jun 2004 Last revised: 17 Feb 2015

See all articles by Ariel Pakes

Ariel Pakes

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); Harvard University - Department of Economics

Zvi Griliches

(Deceased)

Date Written: October 1980

Abstract

This is a first report from a larger study of inventive activity of U.S. firms and some of its consequences. It reports on the relationship between patents applied for and R&D expenditures based on data for 121 large corporations covering the 1968-1975 period. The main conclusion is that there is a statistically significant relationship between a firm's R&D expenditures and the number of patents it applied for and receives. This relationship is very strong in the cross-sectional dimension (squared partial correlations of .8 or higher). It is weaker in the within-firm time-series dimension (partial r[squared]'s of .2 to .3). Attempts to fit an unconstrained distributed lag relationship yields only significant coefficients for the first and last terms in the lag structure, indicating both a quick response of patenting to changes in R&D and a small but persistent effect of past R&D, the truncation of this long lag being reflected in a significant coefficient for R&D lagged five years. In spite of these difficulties, patent counts do measure something systematic and hence are worthy of further study.

Suggested Citation

Pakes, Ariel and Griliches, Zvi, Patents and R and D at the Firm Level: A First Look (October 1980). NBER Working Paper No. w0561. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=264395

Ariel Pakes (Contact Author)

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) ( email )

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Harvard University - Department of Economics ( email )

Littauer Center
Room 117
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
617-495-5320 (Phone)
617-495-8570 (Fax)

Zvi Griliches

(Deceased)

Here is the Coronavirus
related research on SSRN

Paper statistics

Downloads
75
Abstract Views
1,074
rank
338,643
PlumX Metrics