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Innovation Networks in China, Japan, and Korea: Evidence from Japanese Patent Data

Discussion Papers


March 2011


The growing importance of innovation in economic growth has encouraged the development of innovation capabilities in East Asia, within which China, Japan, and Korea are most important in terms of technological capabilities. Using Japanese patent data, we examine how knowledge networks have developed among these countries. We find that Japan’s technological specialization saw little change, but those of Korea and China changed rapidly since 1970s. By the year 2009, technology specialization has become similar across three countries in the sense that the common field of prominent technology is “electronic circuits and communication technologies”. Patent citations suggest that technology flows were largest in the electronic technology, pointing to the deepening of innovation networks in these countries.

Keywords: Innovation Network, Patent Statistics, China, Japan, Korea
JEL classification: O31, O33, L6

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