Innovative Capabilities, Innovation Performance and Institutional Context: Do strong intellectual property rights lead multinational firms to patent more?

Dr. Randolph Bruno, University College London

We characterise the knowledge production process whereby the inventive capabilities of the firm generate innovation performance in highly inventive MNEs. We go on to explore the sensitivity of this relationship to institutional context, in particular the strength of intellectual property rights (IPR) protection. We propose that innovative performance will be enhanced when the firm is based in locations where IPR protection is stronger. Moreover, innovation performance depends on the distance between the home and host country IPR regime. Thus, MNEs locating their R&D activities in countries with similar IPR regimes, either strong IPR protection in both the home and host country or weak in both, will have a greater positive relationship between inventive capabilities and innovation performance. However, when MNEs locate their R&D activities in host economies with IPR regimes significantly lower than their home country, performance is worse. The converse effect is less marked. We test these ideas using a unique new proprietorial dataset about the most innovative MNEs in the world, an unbalanced panel of around 879 firms observed for the period 2004 to 2013 and find strong support for our hypotheses.

About the speaker

Dr. Randolph Luca Bruno is Associate Professor of Economics at University College London, SSEES. He holds a PhD in Economics and Management from the Sant’Anna School of Advanced Studies, Pisa Italy. His main research interests revolve around labor economics, comparative economics and the role of institutions and technology in economic development from a Macro as well as Micro perspectives. Randolph is Research Fellow at IZA-Bonn and Senior Research Fellow at Fondazione Rodolfo DeBenedetti-Milan as well as consultant for the World Bank and Expert for the European Commission. Randolph has also covered visiting positions at the London School of Economics, The Universita' della Svizzera Italiana and the University of Bari.

Venue: via Zoom

Date: 17 December 2020

Time: 12:00 - 13:00  CET