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Regulation as the Mother of Innovation: The Case of SO2 Control

31 Pages Posted: 21 Mar 2005  

Margaret R. Taylor

University of California, Berkeley - The Richard & Rhoda Goldman School of Public Policy

Edward L. Rubin

Vanderbilt University - Law School

David A. Hounshell

Carnegie Mellon University - Department of History

Abstract

This paper explores the relationship between government actions and innovation in an environmental control technology - sulfur dioxide (SO2) control technologies for power plants - through the use of complementary research methods. Its findings include the importance of regulation and the anticipation of regulation in stimulating invention; the greater role of regulation, as opposed to public R&D expenditures, in inducing invention; the importance of regulatory stringency in determining technical pathways and stimulating collaboration; and the importance of regulatory-driven technological diffusion in contributing to operating experience and post-adoption innovation in cost and performance. A number of policy implications are drawn from this work.

Suggested Citation

Taylor, Margaret R. and Rubin, Edward L. and Hounshell, David A., Regulation as the Mother of Innovation: The Case of SO2 Control. Law & Policy, Vol. 27, No. 2, pp. 348-378, April 2005. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=684343

Margaret R. Taylor (Contact Author)

University of California, Berkeley - The Richard & Rhoda Goldman School of Public Policy ( email )

2607 Hearst Avenue
Berkeley, CA 94720-7320
United States

Edward L. Rubin

Vanderbilt University - Law School ( email )

131 21st Avenue South
Nashville, TN 37203-1181
United States

David A. Hounshell

Carnegie Mellon University - Department of History ( email )

College of Humanities and Social Sciences
Pittsburgh, PA 15213
United States
412 268-1019 (Phone)

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