The purpose of this paper is twofold: to analyze to what extent innovation output of R & D collaborations, proxied by co-patenting activities in terms of quantity, characteristics and value, differs depending on whether the engaged R & D partners have a certain type of relationship (allies, suppliers and subsidiaries); to identify possible automakers co-patenting patterns taking into account the differences in the innovation output with their R & D partners.
To reach the aims, the authors matched two types of data: co-assigned patent portfolio of four automakers and relationship type between automakers and their co-assignees. Matching the company names of the two data sources allowed the authors to obtain the final data set used to carry out extensive descriptive and regression analysis, both on a firm- and patent-level.
Results show differences in the characteristics and the technological value of patented inventions in relation with the type of collaboration partner; they also support the authors in the identification of four co-patenting patterns (contingent, purposive, watchful and advanced) according to the co-patenting propensity and the presence of a preferred relationship type.
The paper contributes to the literature by investigating the presence of differences across the patenting activities of a selection of automakers and their supplier, allied and subsidiary firms. The issue related to patent value represents an emerging area of interest in the field of collaborations for innovation. The methodology constitutes a novelty by matching two different sources and standardizing the company names (“name game”) through an automated algorithm and a double manual check, by searching company web sites and corporate trees.
The research is funded by the University of Padua (CPDA129273).
Agostini, L. and Caviggioli, F. (2015), "R & D collaboration in the automotive innovation environment: An analysis of co-patenting activities", Management Decision, Vol. 53 No. 6, pp. 1224-1246. https://doi.org/10.1108/MD-06-2014-0407Download as .RIS
Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Copyright © 2015, Emerald Group Publishing Limited