Political Sentiment and Innovation: Evidence from Patenters
73 Pages Posted: 4 Aug 2022 Last revised: 20 Jun 2023
Date Written: June 1, 2023
We document political sentiment effects on US inventors. Democratic inventors are more likely to patent (relative to Republicans) after the 2008 election of Obama but less likely after the 2016 election of Trump. These effects are 2-3 times as strong among politically active partisans and are present even within firms over time. Patenting by immigrant inventors (relative to non-immigrants) also falls following Trump's election. Finally, we show partisan concentration by technology class and firm. This concentration aggregates up to more patenting in Democrat-dominated technologies (e.g., Biotechnology) compared to Republican-dominated technologies (e.g., Weapons) following the 2008 election of Obama.
Keywords: Patents, Partisanship, Productivity
JEL Classification: O31, J24, M5, D72
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation