Experimental evidence on the effects of innovation contests

Date: 2015
By: Brueggemann, Julia
Meub, Lukas
URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:zbw:cegedp:251&r=net
Economic research on innovation has long discussed which policy instruments best foster innovativeness in individuals and organizations. One of the instruments easily accessible to policy-makers is innovation contests; however, there is ambiguous empirical evidence concerning how such contests should be designed. Our experimental study provides evidence by analyzing the effects of two different innovation contests on subjects´ innovativeness: a prize for the aggregate innovativeness and a prize for the best innovation. We implement a creative real effort task simulating a sequential innovation process, whereby subjects determine royalty fees for their created products, which also serve as a measure of cooperation. We find that both contest conditions reduce the willingness to cooperate between subjects compared to a benchmark condition without an innovation contest. However, the total innovation activity is not influenced by introducing innovation contest schemes. From a policy perspective, the implementation of state-subsidized innovation contests in addition to the existing intellectual property rights system should be questioned.
Keywords: innovation prizes,competition,laboratory experiment,real effort task,creativity,innovation policy
JEL: C91 D89 O31
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