Advanced

How do the foreign-born perform in inventive activity? Evidence from Sweden

Zheng, Yannu LU and Ejermo, Olof LU (2015) In Journal of Population Economics 28(3). p.659-695
Abstract
Using a new database that matches patent applications by Swedish residents with demographic information from 1985 to 2007, we examine differences in inventive performance by individuals of foreign and domestic origins, in terms of quantity (probability of patenting, total number of patents per inventor) and quality (forward citations, probability of grant) of patents. We further compare adult and child immigrants with their Swedish-born counterparts. Holding other variables constant, we find that the immigrants are generally less likely to patent than the Swedish-born. Nonetheless, the general group of immigrant inventors, including those who migrated as adults, performs as well as the native inventors and therefore seems more positively... (More)
Using a new database that matches patent applications by Swedish residents with demographic information from 1985 to 2007, we examine differences in inventive performance by individuals of foreign and domestic origins, in terms of quantity (probability of patenting, total number of patents per inventor) and quality (forward citations, probability of grant) of patents. We further compare adult and child immigrants with their Swedish-born counterparts. Holding other variables constant, we find that the immigrants are generally less likely to patent than the Swedish-born. Nonetheless, the general group of immigrant inventors, including those who migrated as adults, performs as well as the native inventors and therefore seems more positively selected. Compared with the Swedish-born, the immigrants who migrated as children are disadvantaged in both quantity and quality of patents, which may be linked to a lack of Sweden-specific human capital. Whether education was received in Sweden does not seem to make a difference for the immigrants who migrated as adults. In summary, this study provides an initial impression of the inventive performance, contribution and challenges of distinct groups of immigrants who have differing characteristics and backgrounds. (Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
Immigrants, Inventors, Children, Adults
in
Journal of Population Economics
volume
28
issue
3
pages
659 - 695
publisher
Springer
external identifiers
  • wos:000353515900005
  • scopus:84939938168
ISSN
0933-1433
DOI
10.1007/s00148-015-0551-2
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
4796d6e7-e69a-4cfb-9a1c-6d6c6c8897e4 (old id 5385895)
date added to LUP
2015-05-18 13:31:41
date last changed
2017-06-04 04:08:24
@article{4796d6e7-e69a-4cfb-9a1c-6d6c6c8897e4,
  abstract     = {Using a new database that matches patent applications by Swedish residents with demographic information from 1985 to 2007, we examine differences in inventive performance by individuals of foreign and domestic origins, in terms of quantity (probability of patenting, total number of patents per inventor) and quality (forward citations, probability of grant) of patents. We further compare adult and child immigrants with their Swedish-born counterparts. Holding other variables constant, we find that the immigrants are generally less likely to patent than the Swedish-born. Nonetheless, the general group of immigrant inventors, including those who migrated as adults, performs as well as the native inventors and therefore seems more positively selected. Compared with the Swedish-born, the immigrants who migrated as children are disadvantaged in both quantity and quality of patents, which may be linked to a lack of Sweden-specific human capital. Whether education was received in Sweden does not seem to make a difference for the immigrants who migrated as adults. In summary, this study provides an initial impression of the inventive performance, contribution and challenges of distinct groups of immigrants who have differing characteristics and backgrounds.},
  author       = {Zheng, Yannu and Ejermo, Olof},
  issn         = {0933-1433},
  keyword      = {Immigrants,Inventors,Children,Adults},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {3},
  pages        = {659--695},
  publisher    = {Springer},
  series       = {Journal of Population Economics},
  title        = {How do the foreign-born perform in inventive activity? Evidence from Sweden},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00148-015-0551-2},
  volume       = {28},
  year         = {2015},
}