The role of early-career factors in the formation of serial academic inventors

Cornelia Lawson, Valerio Sterzi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Citations (SciVal)


This paper explores the importance of early-career characteristics of academic inventors and how they affect their patenting activity. Using a novel dataset on 555 UK academic inventors, we find that the quality of the first invention is the best predictor for subsequent participation in the patenting process. We further find evidence for a positive training effect whereby researchers who were trained at universities that had already established commercialisation units patent more. In addition, researchers who gained their first patenting experience in industry are able to benefit from stronger knowledge flows and receive more citations than their purely academic peers.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbersct076
Pages (from-to)464-479
Number of pages16
JournalScience and Public Policy
Issue number4
Early online date9 Oct 2013
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2014


  • Academic inventors
  • Technology transfer
  • University patents

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Public Administration
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law


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