New combinations and academic engagement: Do academic inventors affect firms' technological recombination?
Paper in proceedings, 2015
This paper proposes that academic inventors, who are researchers employed at universities and who are involved in the
invention processes of firms, can be an important search channel for firms, and that directly involving them in firms?
invention teams may increase the probability of generating technological combinations new to the firm. The hypotheses
derived based on this proposition are tested on patent data between 1990 and 2005 on Swedish based R&D intensive
firms in manufacturing industries, and are supported by the empirical tests. The findings demonstrate that when
academic inventors join firms? inventor teams the likelihood of generating new combinations increase substantially, but
only so in firms? core technologies. This paper thus contributes to the emergent microlevel theory of technological
recombination and innovation search, by examining a specific type of inventor not investigated in prior studies.