Technological Learning and Innovation Gestation Lags at the Frontier of Science: From CERN Procurement to Patents

53 Pages Posted: 15 Apr 2019

See all articles by Andrea Bastianin

Andrea Bastianin

Università degli Studi di Milano-Bicocca - Department of Economics, Management and Statistics (DEMS); Università degli Studi di Milano-Bicocca - Center for European Studies (CefES)

Paolo Castelnovo

Università degli Studi di Milano-Bicocca - Center for Interdisciplinary Studies in Economics, Psychology & Social Sciences (CISEPS)

Massimo Florio

University of Milan - Department of Economics, Management and Quantitative Methods (DEMM)

Anna Giunta

Department of Economics Roma Tre University

Date Written: April 10, 2019

Abstract

This paper contributes to the literature on the impact of Big Science Centres on technological innovation. We exploit a unique dataset with information on CERN’s procurement orders to study the collaborative innovation process between CERN and its industrial partners, mostly European firms. Since 19 out of the 23 Member Countries of CERN belong to the EU, public procurement for innovation through CERN can be seen as factor contributing to European innovation policies. After a qualitative discussion of case studies, survival and count data models are estimated; the impact of CERN procurement on suppliers’ innovation is captured by the number of patent applications. The fact that firms in our sample received their first order over a long time span (1995-2008) delivers a natural partition of industrial partners into “suppliers” and “not yet suppliers”. This allows estimating the impact of CERN on the hazard to file a patent for the first time and on the number of patent applications, as well as the time needed for these effects to show up. We find that a “CERN effect” does exist: being an industrial partner of CERN is associated with an increase in the hazard to file a patent for the first time and in the number of patent applications. These effects require a significant “gestation lag” in the range of five to eight years, pointing to a relatively slow process of absorption of new ideas.

Keywords: Big Science; CERN; innovation; public procurement; patents; gestation lags

JEL Classification: C21; C23; H57; L39; O31

Suggested Citation

Bastianin, Andrea and Castelnovo, Paolo and Florio, Massimo and Giunta, Anna, Technological Learning and Innovation Gestation Lags at the Frontier of Science: From CERN Procurement to Patents (April 10, 2019). University of Milan Bicocca Department of Economics, Management and Statistics Working Paper No. 405. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3371025 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3371025

Andrea Bastianin (Contact Author)

Università degli Studi di Milano-Bicocca - Department of Economics, Management and Statistics (DEMS) ( email )

Piazza dell'Ateneo Nuovo, 1
Milan, 20126
Italy

Università degli Studi di Milano-Bicocca - Center for European Studies (CefES)

U6 Building
Viale Piero e Alberto Pirelli, 22
Milano, 20126
Italy

Paolo Castelnovo

Università degli Studi di Milano-Bicocca - Center for Interdisciplinary Studies in Economics, Psychology & Social Sciences (CISEPS) ( email )

Piazza dell'Ateneo Nuovo, 1
Milano, 20126
Italy

Massimo Florio

University of Milan - Department of Economics, Management and Quantitative Methods (DEMM) ( email )

Via Conservatorio 7
I-20122 Milano, 20122
Italy
+39 02 50321510 (Phone)
+39 02 50321505 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.demm.unimi.it/ecm/home

Anna Giunta

Department of Economics Roma Tre University ( email )

Via Silvio D'Amico 77
Rome, 00145
Italy

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