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Abstract  

This contribution formulates a number of propositions about the emergence of novel nanoscience and nanotechnology (N&N). Seeking to complement recent work that aims to define a research agenda and draws on general insights from the innovation literature, this paper aims to synthesize knowledge from innovation-related studies of the N&N field. More specifically, it is suggested that N&N is often misconstrued as either a field of technology or an area of (broadly) converging technologies while evidence to date suggests rather that N&N be considered a set of inter-related and overlapping about not necessarily merging technologies. The role of instrumentation in connecting the various N&N fields is underlined. Finally, the question is raised whether change in N&N tends to be incremental rather than discontinuous, being the result of technological path-dependencies and lock-ins in industry-typical search regimes that are only slowly giving way to more boundary-crossing activities.

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This paper addresses the issue of how science-technology interaction can be measured in the knowledge-driven economy. More specifically, it compares the patent citation indicator to another patent-based measure using data on a small European economy. Patent citation patterns will be compared to researcher patents. Comparing the two indicators suggests different patterns of science-technology linkage. An analysis of revealed technology contributions of academic inventors and a survey-based analysis of technological collaboration and knowledge transfer point to a possible explanation. Furthermore the research presents evidence that suggests technology sectors are related to different modes of collaboration in inventive processes amongst academics.

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Policy-makers in many countries emphasize the importance of non-publication output of university research. Increasingly, policies are pursued that attempt to encourage entrepreneurial activity in universities and public research institutes. Apart from generating spin-out companies, technology licensing, and collaborative research, attention is focused on patenting activities of researchers. Some analysts suggest that there is a trade-off between scholarly publication and patenting activity. This paper explores this relationship drawing on a data set of nanoscience publications and nanotechnology patents in three European countries. In particular, this study examines whether researchers who both publish and patent are more productive and more highly cited than their peers who concentrate on scholarly publication in communicating their research results. Furthermore, this study investigates the collaborative activity of inventor-authors and their position in their respective networks of scientific communication. The findings suggest that overall there seems to be no adverse relationship between publication and patenting activity, at least not in this area of science and technology. Patenting scientists appear to outperform their solely publishing, non-inventing peers in terms of publication counts and citation frequency. However, while they are considerably over-represented in the top performance class, the data indicates that inventor-authors may not occupy top positions within that group. An analysis of co-authorship links indicates that patenting authors can also play a prominent role within networks of scientific communication. The network maps also point to groups where inventor-authors occur frequently and others where this is not the case, which possibly reflects cognitive differences between sub-fields. Finally, the data indicates that inventor-authors account only for a marginal share of publishing scholars while they play a substantial role amongst inventors.

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Abstract  

This paper aims to contribute to a better understanding of patent citation analysis in general and its application to novel fields of science and technology in particular. It introduces into the subject-matter by discussing an empirical problem, the relationship of nano-publications and nano-patents as representations of nano-science and nano-technology. Drawing on a variety of sources, different interpretations of patent citations are presented. Then, the nature of patent citations is further investigated by comparing them to citations in the scientific literature. After characterizing the citation linkage as indicators of reciprocal relationships between science and technology, patent citations in nano-science and technology are analyzed in terms of interfield and organizational knowledge-flows.

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Abstract  

This paper gives an overview of quantitative approaches used to study the science/technology linkage. Our discussion is informed by a number of theoretical approaches that have emerged over the past few years in the area of innovation studies emphasizing the exchange of actors in innovation system and a shift in the division of labour between publicly funded basic research and industrial development of technology. We review the more quantitative literature on efforts made to study such linkage phenomena, to which theorizing in the science policy area has attributed great importance. We then introduce a typology of three approaches to study the science/technology linkage - patent citation, industrial science, and university patenting. For each approach, we shall discuss merits and possible disadvantages. In another step we illustrate them using results from studies of the Finnish innovation system. Finally, we list key limitations of the informetric methods and point to possible hybrid approaches that could remedy some of them.

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Abstract  

The emergence of pattent bibliometrics as a new branch of scientometrics necessitates a deeper understanding of the relationship between patents and papers. As this connection is established through the linkage between patents and research papers, one must have a clear idea of similarities and differences between patent and paper citations. This paper will investigate to what extent one can not only apply bibliometric methods to patents but also extend the existing interpretative framework for citations in research papers to the field of patent citations. After pointing out some parallels in the debates about the nature of citations in patents and scientific articles, the paper outlines those parts of bibliometric theory covering scientific citations that could be relevant to patent citations too. Then it highlights the specialties and peculiarities of patent citations. One major conclusion is that the general nature of a common framework for both scientific and patent citations would severely limit its usefulness, but research on academic citations might still be a great source of inspiration to the study of patent citations.

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Abstract  

This paper explores the interrelationships between science and technology in the emergingarea of nano-science and technology. We track patent citation relations at the sectoraldisciplinary,the organizational, and the combined industrial/organizational levels. Then weinvestigate the geographic location and organizational affiliation of inventor/authors. Our mainfinding is that there are only a small number of citations connecting nano-patents with nanosciencepapers, while nano-science and technology appear to be relatively well connected incomparison with other fields. Further explorations suggest that nano-science and technology arestill mostly separated spheres, even though there are overlaps, as an analysis of title words shows.Another observation is that university-assigned patents seem to cite papers more frequently thanother patents.

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Abstract  

We distinguish between an internal differentiation of science and technology that focuses on instrumentalities and an external differentiation in terms of the relations of the knowledge production process to other social domains, notably governance and industry. The external contexts bring into play indicators and statistical techniques other than publications, patents, and citations. Using regression analysis, for example, one can examine the importance of knowledge and knowledge spill-over for economic development. The relations can be expected to vary among nations and regions. The field-specificity of changes is emphasized as a major driver of the research agenda. In a knowledge-based economy, institutional arrangements can be considered as support structures for cognitive developments.

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Abstract  

Third-Stream activities have become increasingly important in the UK. However, valuing them in a meaningful way still poses a challenge to science and technology analysts and policy makers alike. This paper reviews the general literature on “patent value” and assesses the extent to which these established measures, including patent citation, patent family, renewal and litigation data, can be applied to the university context. Our study examines indicators of patent value for short and mid-term evaluation purposes, rather than indicators that suffer from long time lags. We also explore the extent to which differences in IP management practices at universities may have an impact on the validity and robustness of possible indicators. Our observations from four UK universities indicate that there are considerable differences between universities as to how they approach the IP management process, which in turn has implications for valuing patents and how they track activity in this area. In their current form, data as collected by universities are not sufficiently robust to serve as the basis for evaluation or resource allocation.

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Abstract  

Nanotechnology has been presented in the policy discourse as an intrinsically interdisciplinary field, requiring collaborations among researchers with different backgrounds, and specific funding schemes supporting knowledge-integration activities. Early bibliometric studies supported this interdisciplinary vision (Meyer & Persson, 1998), but recent results suggest that nanotechnology is (yet) a mixed bag with various mono-disciplinary subfields (Schummer, 2004). We have reexamined the issue at the research project level, carrying out five case studies in molecular motors, a specialty of bionanotechnology. Relying both in data from interviews and bibliometric indicators, we have developed a multidimensional analysis (Sanz-Menndez et al., 2001) in order to explore the extent and types of cross-disciplinary practices in each project. We have found that there is a consistent high degree of cross-disciplinarity in the cognitive practices of research (i.e., use of references and instrumentalities) but a more erratic and narrower degree in the social dimensions (i.e., affiliation and researchers’ background). This suggests that cross-disciplinarity is an eminently epistemic characteristic and that bibliometric indicators based on citations and references capture more accurately the generation of cross-disciplinary knowledge than approaches tracking co-authors’ disciplinary affiliations. In the light of these findings we raise the question whether policies focusing on formal collaborations between laboratories are the most appropriate to facilitate cross-disciplinary knowledge acquisition and generation.

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