Revisiting Firm Size and Technology Centrality in University-Industry Interaction: A Study of Firms' Academic Patents in Sweden
Paper in proceedings, 2012
The paper re-examines the debate on whether, and how firm size, affects the propensity of firms to engage with universities and academic scientists, and in particularly whether that interaction occurs within firms’ core or non-core technologies. This paper makes two contributions in relation to this question. First, the paper contributes empirically by re-examining this issue of firm size and technology centrality for university-industry interaction, based upon new evidence from the APE-INV database on European academic patents. The database for Sweden, as further described below, is unique at the individual level, and it is now complete for the population of academic scientists for 2004 and 2011, and a partial population 2009. The second contribution is to propose a theoretical framework about the value that firms may place upon academic involvement in industrial invention. The aim is that this framework can help explain the returns gained by firms of different sizes, when interacting with academic scientists over patents.