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Edited by Duncan Matthews and Herbert Zech

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Claudia Mund

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Edited by Gustavo Ghidini, Hanns Ullrich and Peter Drahos

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Editorial

Volume 2

Edited by Gustavo Ghidini, Hanns Ullrich and Peter Drahos

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Edited by Gustavo Ghidini, Hanns Ullrich and Peter Drahos

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Keith E. Maskus

Despite centuries of patent protection and policy reforms, solid evidence that exclusive rights induce significant increases in innovation and technology diffusion remains elusive. This lacuna is unfortunate, for it permits pro- and anti-patent observers to make strong claims in the absence of systematic evidence. This article analyses why this situation persists, emphasizing the extreme complexity of the patent–innovation relationship and noting that shortcomings in available statistics are a key barrier to overcoming the problem. Evidence to date that patent protection encourages innovation and growth is mixed and context-specific. While there are stronger indications that it facilitates technology transfer, this conclusion must be heavily qualified. Economists have yet to tackle more difficult questions, relating to public goods provision, which could inform thinking about patents and development. Suggestions are offered regarding how to improve data and analysis in this critical area. Key Words Patents, innovation, economic development, statistical evidence

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Advisory Board

Volume 2

Edited by Gustavo Ghidini, Hanns Ullrich and Peter Drahos

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Edited by Duncan Matthews and Herbert Zech