Endogenous Spillovers, Strategic Blocking, and the Design of Contracts in Collaborative R&D: Evidence from Ncra Filings of R&D Joint Ventures
Economic Analysis Group Discussion Paper: EAG 02-1
36 Pages Posted: 3 May 2002
Date Written: March 2002
The research provides evidence from a dataset of R&D joint venture contracts about how firms organize collaborative R&D. We work out of a dataset of 96 contracts to construct a taxonomy of the types of mechanisms firms use in organizing collaborative R&D. We identify mechanisms with particular syndromes of terms of contract and find that mechanisms cluster into five groups, each of which constitutes a distinct R&D joint venture governance structure. We indicate how these groups line up with various types of hazards. In particular, the research indicates that while knowledge spillovers may give rise to appropriability hazards, the combination of weak property rights and efforts to contain or channel knowledge spillovers may enable joint venture members to strategically block other members' follow-on commercialization or follow-on research. Consequently, firms must balance countervailing hazards. The research goes on to indicate how joint venture partners balance the prospect of strategic blocking against efforts to contain spillovers.
Keywords: R&D joint venture governance, countervailing hazards, endogenous spillovers, strategic blocking, hold-up, standards-setting, knowledge transfers
JEL Classification: L14, D23, O32
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation