First Movers and Follow-on Invention: Evidence from a Vector Space Model of Invention

51 Pages Posted: 12 Apr 2019

See all articles by Kenneth A. Younge

Kenneth A. Younge

Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne

Jeffrey M. Kuhn

University of North Carolina (UNC) at Chapel Hill - Kenan-Flagler Business School

Date Written: March 10, 2019

Abstract

This paper estimates the causal effect of being a first mover in the patent space by charting invention in a vector space model of technological relatedness and timing. Relative to close second movers, we find that first movers are more likely to prosecute a patent application to issuance and to pursue more follow-on invention. Invention novelty, however, is associated with being less likely to prosecute a patent application to issuance and with less follow-on invention. Moreover, the importance of being a first mover depends on how novel the invention is: the marginal effect of being a first mover increases when pursuing more novel invention, even though the overall likelihood of prosecuting a patent to issuance continues to decline with more novelty. We provide open access to our data for follow-on work by other researchers.

Keywords: First Mover, Follow-on Invention, Patents, Novelty

JEL Classification: O3, O30, O31, O32, O34, K11

Suggested Citation

Younge, Kenneth A. and Kuhn, Jeffrey M., First Movers and Follow-on Invention: Evidence from a Vector Space Model of Invention (March 10, 2019). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3354530 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3354530

Kenneth A. Younge (Contact Author)

Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne ( email )

Station 5
1015 Lausanne
Switzerland

Jeffrey M. Kuhn

University of North Carolina (UNC) at Chapel Hill - Kenan-Flagler Business School ( email )

McColl Building
Chapel Hill, NC 27599-3490
United States

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