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The strength of Intellectual Property Right (IPR) protection varies across countries and these differences have persisted across time. In this paper, the author builds a multi-country dynamic model where governments choose IPR policies each period. The author uses country heterogeneity in education, population, and bilateral trade costs to induce IPR protection choices and firm productivity distributions consistent with the data. The author compares the benchmark open economy model to a model without trade and finds that the latter generates a similar rank-ordering of country IPR choices, but IPR choices decrease 8%, on average.
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