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The Politics of InnovationWhy Some Countries Are Better Than Others at Science and Technology$
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Mark Zachary Taylor

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780190464127

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: August 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190464127.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 17 June 2021

Does Technology Need Government?

Does Technology Need Government?

The Five Pillars of Innovation

(p.69) 4 Does Technology Need Government?
The Politics of Innovation

Mark Zachary Taylor

Oxford University Press

Free markets are celebrated for their ability to foster innovation. Therefore, the fundamental question at the heart of innovation research is: why government? This chapter examines the five most popular institutions and policies that governments use to correct classic market failures that plague innovation. These institutions and polices constitute what this book calls the “Five Pillars” of innovation: intellectual property rights, research subsidies, public education, research universities, and trade policy. How do these five institutions and policies aid innovation? Perhaps more important, how far do they go toward explaining why some countries are better at S&T than others? This chapter explains the economic logic behind these “Five Pillars” and surveys the evidence for their effectiveness. The evidence suggests that government institutions and policies, such as the Five Pillars, only take us part of the way to understanding Cardwell’s Law, but they leave an enormous amount of unexplained success and failure.

Keywords:   market failures, intellectual property rights, universities, protectionism, education, R&D expenditures, investment, science policy, technology policy, innovation policy

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