The Power of Individual-Level Drivers of Inventive Performance

40 Pages Posted: 4 Jan 2016

See all articles by Thomas Zwick

Thomas Zwick

University of Würzburg - Business Administration & Economics; Centre for European Economic Research (ZEW); Maastricht University - Research Centre for Education and the Labour Market (ROA)

Katharina Frosch

University of Würzburg

Karin Hoisl

Max Planck Institute for Innovation and Competition; Munich School of Management, Ludwig-Maximilians-University; Copenhagen Business School, Department of Innovation and Organizational Economics

Dietmar Harhoff

Max Planck Institute for Innovation and Competition; Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München; Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

Date Written: November 2015

Abstract

Based on an established theoretical framework of the drivers of inventive performance, the so-called KSAO (Knowledge, Skills, Abilities, and Other) factors, this paper seeks to explain empirically the performance of inventors throughout their careers. We combine survey information spanning the inventors’ entire careers and psychometric test evidence, with patent history data for more than 1,000 inventors. We also control for variables that have traditionally been included in estimations of inventive performance such as inventor age and a broad list of applicant institution-, technology-, patent-, and period-related information. We show that educational level, skills acquired during the career, personality traits, career motivations, cognitive abilities, and cognitive problem-solving style are significantly related to inventive performance.

Keywords: Inventive performance, individual drivers, patent history, survey

JEL Classification: J24, M54, O31, O32

Suggested Citation

Zwick, Thomas and Frosch, Katharina and Hoisl, Karin and Harhoff, Dietmar, The Power of Individual-Level Drivers of Inventive Performance (November 2015). ZEW - Centre for European Economic Research Discussion Paper No. 15-080. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2710650 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2710650

Thomas Zwick (Contact Author)

University of Würzburg - Business Administration & Economics ( email )

Sanderring 2
Wuerzburg, D-97070
Germany

Centre for European Economic Research (ZEW) ( email )

P.O. Box 10 34 43
L 7,1 D-68161 Mannheim
Germany

Maastricht University - Research Centre for Education and the Labour Market (ROA) ( email )

P.O. Box 616
Maastricht, MD6200
Netherlands

Katharina Frosch

University of Würzburg ( email )

Sanderring 2
Würzburg, D-97070
Germany

Karin Hoisl

Max Planck Institute for Innovation and Competition ( email )

Marstallplatz 1
Munich, Bayern 80539
Germany

Munich School of Management, Ludwig-Maximilians-University ( email )

Kaulbachstraße 45
Munich, 80539
Germany

HOME PAGE: http://www.inno-tec.de/mitarbeiter/hoisl/index_e.html

Copenhagen Business School, Department of Innovation and Organizational Economics ( email )

Solbjerg Plads 3
Frederiksberg C, DK - 2000
Denmark

HOME PAGE: http://www.cbs.dk/en/research/departments-and-centres/department-of-innovation-and-organizational-ec

Dietmar Harhoff

Max Planck Institute for Innovation and Competition ( email )

Marstallplatz 1
Munich, Bayern 80539
Germany
+49 89 24246 550 (Phone)
+49 89 24246 599 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.ip.mpg.de

Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München ( email )

Munich, 80539
Germany

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

London
United Kingdom

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