Appendix A: The innovation database
Appendix A: The innovation database The original innovation database consists of 8 074 innovations introduced into the United States in 1982. Of these innovations, 4 476 were identified as occurring in manufacturing industries. These data are classified according to four-digit SIC industry, the firm, and the location of the innovation. A private firm, The Futures Group, constructed the database and performed quality-control analyses for the U.S. Small Business Administration by examining over 100 technology, engineering, and trade journals, covering each manufacturing industry. From the sections in each trade journal listing innovations and new products, a database consisting of the innovations by fourdigit SIC industry was formed. The entire list of trade journals used to compile these data is available from the authors. The Small Business Administration defines an innovation as ‘a process that begins with an invention, proceeds with the development of the invention, and results in introduction of a new product, process or service to the marketplace’ (Edwards and Gordon 1984: 1). Because the innovations recorded in 1982 were the result of inventions made, on average, 4.3 years earlier, in some sense the innovation database represents the inventions made around 1978 that were subsequently introduced to the market in 1982. The data were also checked for duplication. In fact, 8 800 innovations were actually recorded, but it was subsequently found that 726 of them appeared either in separate issues of the same journal or else in different journals. Thus, double-counting was avoided. The innovation data were classified according to...
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