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Daniel Sommer and Bernd Ebersberger
''International R&D teams: Performance effects and the moderating role of technological competences ''
( 2021, Vol. 41 No.2 )
Firms increasingly internationalize their R&D teams in order to exploit a broader range of inventor backgrounds and to benefit from local competencies. We analyze the effects of internationality in R&D teams, measured on a complete patent data sample by European firms. We measure team member internationality and include the level of technological competency at the inventors' locations in the relevant fields, through the Revealed Technological Advantage (RTA). With a quantile regression we break down our results for different levels of patent quality, compared to a baseline OLS. Our results indicate that while the effect of team internationality on patent quality changes from negative to positive over the patent quality distribution, the technological competence at the international inventor locations has a positive effect on patent quality at all levels of patent quality. For better performing patents, a high technological competence even strengthens the positive effects of internationalization, whereas in very low performing patents we observe a negative amplification. Therefore, internationalizing a research team does only pay off for medium or high-quality patents, whereas a high technological competence in the countries of inventors is always beneficial.
Keywords: patent citation, MNC, patent quality, RTA, quantile regression, OECD REGPAT
JEL: O3 - Technological Change; Research and Development: General
F2 - International Factor Movements and International Business: General
Manuscript Received : Jun 29 2020 Manuscript Accepted : Apr 09 2021

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