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Personal Statement

个人陈述 Statement of Purpose

 
 
 

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Personal statement 模板 - MIT 管理  

2009-09-27 08:50:44|  分类: 管理科学 |  标签: |举报 |字号 订阅

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PERSONAL STATEMENT  
 
Associate Professor,  
Technological Innovation & Entrepreneurship 
MIT Sloan School of Management 
 
My research agenda examines the conflicts and compromises shaping the boundary between 
academic science and the commercial world -- especially those wrought by substantial growth in the 
enforcement of intellectual property (IP) rights over  basic scientific research.  In particular, while the 
expansion of IP rights provides many opportunities for science-based firms and universities to 
commercialize science, it may also transform the broader scientific community in unexpected ways, with 
surprising implications for the long-run accumulation of scientific knowledge.  Understanding these 
tensions is of great significance for individuals, firms and nations intending to use science as a source of 
competitive advantage.   
To address these critical issues, my research  deepens our understanding of the academic-
commercial boundary.  Not only does it describe the broad transformation wrought on scientists by IP.  It 
also identifies the causal impact of this transformation in two areas: the daily life of scientists and the 
productivity and organization of the scientific community. Finally, it captures the mediating influence of 
firm strategy and social norms on these changes and, reciprocally, the ways in which academic scientists 
and their counterparts in industry have shaped their institutional environments.  In doing so, my work 
expands our current understanding of how changes in  IP rights and their enforcement shape the daily 
practices of scientists and in turn how this influences the organization and productivity of scientific work. 
It also brings new insights into the ways in which scientists actually shape their institutional environments, 
contrasting the relatively simplistic view of the scientific community that prevails.   As a result of my 
research, scholars, managers and policy-makers are better able to predict how their strategies and policies 
shape and are shaped by scientific practice, and  therefore how they influence knowledge accumulation 
and, ultimately, growth.   
My research is inherently interdisciplinary, drawing on insights from sociological, economic and 
management theory and bringing them closer to  science as practiced “on the ground”.  In doing so, I 
contribute to (and challenge) scholarly conversations in these fields while also deepening our overall 
understanding of scientific work.  The approach I take to this interdisciplinary challenge is unique in the 
way it combines my scientific background and personal experience of scientific life with the scholarly 
literature across diverse fields of enquiry.  As a consequence, my work is characterized by careful analytic designs that exhibit a deep understanding of similarities and differences across scientific fields of enquiry 
and a precise knowledge of the details of specific policy changes as they are experienced by scientists.  It 
is also unusual because I implement these approaches in both qualitative and quantitative studies, often 
taking insights derived from qualitative work to inform new quantitative studies and vice versa.  The 
promise of my approach is to offer rich insights into the link between scientific and commercial 
institutions on the one hand and the productivity and practices of scientists on the other.     
Influential scholars in several disciplines have recognized the value of my work.  It has made 
important theoretical contributions to economics, sociology and the management of intellectual property.  
In addition, it has influenced public policy debates on the pros and cons of intellectual property 
(particularly in academia), providing new empirical evidence as well as methods that can be applied to 
other issues in science policy  Lastly, scholars have noted the strong managerial implications of my work 
for how firms manage intellectual property and build relationships with scientific communities. The broad 
and diverse influence of my work has been validated by the range and prominence of my funding sources 
and publications.  My support ranges from a Sloan Foundation Industry Fellowship to a National Science 
Foundation “Science of Science Policy” grant, and my articles are published in places such as Science, 
The New England Journal of Medicine, American Journal of Sociology, Organization Science, Journal of 
Economic Behavior & Organization and Research in the Sociology of Organizations. 
Before describing the three streams of my research it is important to articulate the theoretical 
grounding of my research and how it bridges several fields of enquiry: sociology of science and scientific 
institutions, economics of science and innovation, and management of intellectual property.  My work 
proceeds in the spirit of accumulation and I find myself standing on the “shoulders of giants” in each of 
these fields.  Nonetheless, while each field brings its own perspective to the questions I ask, they proceed 
largely independently and operate under important limitations that my work aims to overcome.  On the 
one hand, traditional sociology of science (and of  other knowledge communities) has articulated the 
institutional system guiding researchers and, in more recent years, examined the detailed features of daily 
scientific life.  However, this literature stops short of analyzing how institutional change leads to changes 
in the productivity, social structure or organization of knowledge work.   Nor has it broadly examined the 
role of other institutional elements that affect  the scientific community; most notably, studies of the 
scientific community are silent on the role of legal institutions (including but not limited to IP rights).  
Scholars who study the economics of science and innovation attend to the institutions undergirding 
innovation but focus mainly on the patent system as it influences firm knowledge production.  They pay 
less attention to analyzing changing scientific institutions, changes at the science-commerce interface 
(such as patenting in academia) and the impact of these changes on the rate and direction of scientific 
knowledge accumulation.   The third relevant field that my work bridges, intellectual property strategy, 
typically takes the rules of the patent system for granted and rarely examines when and how individual researchers (in academia or industry) attempt to change the patent system and its attendant property rights.   
The field also overlooks what happens how firm strategies interact with public knowledge production and 
the knowledge communities upon which they rely.  
The major goal of my work is to illuminate these  fields in a way that brings theory into deeper 
connection with scientific practice, and to reveal the  important roles that working scientists play at the 
academic-commercial boundary. While most research in this field relies upon bibliometric data alone, my 
work is distinguished by detailed study of scientists combining extensive interviews with bibliometric 
data and statistical analysis.  I have found that my training as a scientist provides excellent preparation to 
fulfill this challenging task. First, it enables me  to gain unusual access to members of the scientific 
community, and to explore the nuanced ways in which institutional changes shape their detailed research 
choices, research direction and disclosure choices.  For example, when interviewing mouse geneticists 
about the impact of the Oncomouse  patent (owned by Harvard and licensed to DuPont) on genetically 
engineered research mice, I was able to probe deeply into the ways  in which DuPont’s patent licensing 
terms shaped their experiments, their labs and their communities (Murray 2008ab).  My interviews with 
male and female scientists on issues of gender and commercial science were also facilitated by my own 
laboratory experiences (Murray & Graham 2007; Ding, Murray & Stuart 2007, 2008).  Second, I use my 
knowledge of scientific practice to articulate a more precise description of how scientists behave, which 
leads to theoretical and empirical insights. My determination that scientific knowledge was often 
disclosed as patent-paper pairs drew on my own time in the laboratory and my  interviews with leading 
scientists at MIT and beyond (Murray 2002).  Third, my scientific knowledge allows me to develop new 
sources of data and natural experiments (Murray & Stern 2007): developing a landscape of the disclosure 
of all 25,000 human genes (in terms of the patents, publications and patent-paper pairs), I combined 
bioinformatics and bibliometric methods (Jensen & Murray 2005, Huang & Murray 2008, Gans, Murray 
& Stern 2008).  More recently, I used my understanding of genetics to analyze over 13,000 research mice 
identifying those affected by changing IP-enforcement conditions as well as two control groups, 
unaffected by the change (Murray et al. 2008).  This type of analysis requires an understanding of the 
subtleties in scientific fields. 
 
MAPPING RESEARCH THEMES 
The expansion of IP rights in the past twenty five years, particularly in the life sciences, increased 
opportunities for scientists to file patents.  This is considered to be both a source of scientific (and 
commercial) competitiveness, but also of concern.   Scholars and policy-makers debate the potential 
impact of IP on academia – on the level and direction of scientific progress as well as the social 
organization of scientific communities.  Contributing to these vigorous debates, I have grounded my work 
in the observation that scientists increasingly file patents and publish papers on the results of their scientific experiments (Murray 2002).  While traditionally thought of as arising from two distinctive types 
of research investments, a central part of my research argues that a single research project can generate 
outputs that simultaneously contribute to public knowledge and to commercialization.  Consequently, 
researchers can make a variety of disclosure choices.  Depending on their preferences and institutional 
positions, scientists can publish, file patents, or do both.  A single example from my research is 
instructive.  In 1984, Harvard researchers developed the first transgenic mouse susceptible to cancer – the 
Oncomouse.  Their decision to disclose as a "paper-patent" pair highlights its value as a scientific 
discovery and a commercial product.  It also embeds the same knowledge in two distinctive institutional 
logics – the logic of the public commons most closely associated with academic science and the logic of 
private property, traditionally linked to commercial science. The choice made by the Harvard scientists is 
not a peculiar anomaly.  In fact, my research shows  that pairs often constitute the preferred disclosure 
choice of researchers in academia and industry: in “The Intellectual Property Landscape of the Human 
Genome” (Jensen & Murray 2005) we find that over 20% of genes in the human genome are patented. Of 
these, at least 85% are disclosed as patent-paper pairs (Huang & Murray 2008).  
Patent-paper pairs provide a lens for a broader examination of the intersection between the 
institutions of the public commons and private property.  When knowledge is disclosed in patent-paper 
pairs it initiates a set of dynamic processes that bring these two institutions into convergence.  At the 
same time, because the normative requirements of these public and private institutional logics may 
diverge, this intersection can, at times, conflict.   My work examines this intersection in three ways, which 
I describe below as three streams: First I articulate the conditions shaping how individual scientists select 
their disclosure strategies, focusing particularly on the influence of their organizational settings (academia 
versus industry).  Second, I explore how scientists come together to challenge and adapt to some of the 
unintended consequences and conflicts at the boundary of these public and private institutions.  Third, I 
develop and apply quantitative methods to capture how IP affects scientific productivity and the social 
organization of the scientific community. 
 
Stream I: IP and the Individual Practices of Scientists 
I argue that the decisions of scientists to embed their knowledge in the public commons (papers) 
or private property (patents) institutions are endogenous. This challenges the prevailing view of scientific 
progress – a view claiming that a clear, exogenous mapping can be made from the institutional logic of 
disclosure to both the type of knowledge and the organization of its production.  According to this 
account, basic knowledge produced in academia is disclosed in the public institutional sphere, while 
applied science is produced by for-profit firms and disclosed through patents.  In challenging this view, 
two of my papers explore the ways a researcher’s organizational setting contours her disclosure choices:  Academic scientists.  My research on patenting decisions in academia highlights important 
gender differences in faculty patenting rates.  While the rewards for researchers in the life sciences are 
still largely based on publications, they also receive some (limited) commercial returns to patenting and 
other forms of commercial science (Edwards,  Murray and Yu, 2006).  Even when financially 
unsuccessful, commercial science provides additional scientific resources.  For example, in “Buying 
Science & Selling Science: Gender Stratification in Commercial Science” (Murray & Graham 2007), my 
interviews with more than 100 faculty members show that participation in commercial science brings with 
it distinctive forms of status and resources and that  patents have become an integral part of faculty 
strategies for the dissemination of ideas and for signaling interest in commercial activities. Given the 
value of patenting, it is puzzling to find that wide variation in patenting rates exists even after controlling 
for the inherent “patentability” of research.  This  suggests that the decision to disclose through patent-
paper pairs is mediated by complex social factors in academia. 
I purse this question in “An Empirical Study  of Gender Differences in Patenting among 
Academic Life Scientists” (Ding, Murray & Stuart 2006).  Our analysis shows that for over 4,000 life 
science faculty, after accounting for the effects of productivity, networks, field, and employer attributes, 
the net effect of gender remains: women patent at 40% the rate of comparable men.  We establish several 
additional qualitative findings: women  believe patenting to be complex, and lacking rich commercial 
networks, they also believe that patenting is time consuming and unlikely to be fruitful.  Unlike their male 
counterparts, women expressed concern about the potentially negative impact that patenting might have 
on education, collegiality, and research quality. On a more positive note, the archival data suggest that the 
gender gap is decreasing, and the institutional environment for patenting is changing (thus changing the 
meaning of patents, as I describe below).  These findings have generated considerable interest among 
policymakers, the Association of University Technology Managers and scientists themselves.    
Industry scientists. In a new working paper “Patents, Papers, Pairs & Secrets: Contracting Over 
the Disclosure of Scientific Knowledge” (Gans, Murray & Stern, 2008) I examine the disclosure choices 
of researchers in industry.  We argue that four disclosure regimes are considered in industry: secrecy, 
patenting (commercial science), publication (academic  science) and patent-paper pairs.  The disclosure 
decision, we claim, is grounded in the negotiation  between researchers and the firms who fund their 
research.  By developing a simple economic framework to describe these negotiations we map the precise 
conditions under which each disclosure choice is likely to dominate.  At the most simple level, we argue 
that researchers want to publish to gain recognition (like their academic counterparts) but funders want to 
retain the knowledge as a secret (at odds with publication) or to use patent protection as a barrier to entry.  
Thus, there is complementarity between patenting  and publishing because, once patents are filed, if 
disclosures in patents and papers overlap then the marginal cost of publishing falls and patent-paper pairs 
dominate.  This perspective provides a simple but instructive model to explain patent-paper pairs and raises questions about a set of strategically important economic choices that are more typically treated as 
empirical puzzles. It is also useful for exploring the institutional foundations of knowledge production, 
providing the micro-foundations for understanding knowledge disclosure. 
 
Stream II: Scientific community shapes IP  
Studies of disclosure by individual scientists simply take the public and private institutional 
logics as given.  The diverging norms in these two institutional spheres, however, suggest that across the 
broader scientific community, patent-paper pairs may be as much a source of conflict as an unproblematic 
opportunity for multiple forms of rewards.  I have explored this important issue in a number of papers 
focusing on the ways in which IP rights are transformed by the researchers in the academic community, 
and by entrepreneurs engaged in commercial science.   
Academic Transformation: In The Oncomouse that Roared: Hybrid Exchange Strategies as a 
Source of Productive Tension at the Boundary of Overlapping Institutions (Murray 2008), I examine the 
ways in which patents shaped and were shaped  by the mouse genetics community.  I take as my 
centerpiece the publication and patenting of the Oncomouse: the first example in mouse genetics of the 
embedding of a single piece of knowledge in two institutional logics.  The paired disclosure initiated a 
dynamic process for the exchange and follow-on use of oncomice (and their techniques of production).  
For 3-4 years, the mice were subject only to the informal norms for exchange and follow-on use 
characteristic of a competitive, but collegial, scientific community.  After the grant of the patent, DuPont 
(exclusive licensee) strongly enforced its property rights on scientists.  Through detailed interviews and 
documentary analysis comparing the pre- and post- patent period, I closely analyzed the impact of the 
Oncomouse patent on mouse geneticists and how they sought to shape the enforcement and meaning of IP 
rights. I document the outrage felt by scientists over DuPont’s licensing conditions (which included fees, 
limits to informal exchange, pre-publication research disclosure and reach-through rights) and their 
objections on practical, historical and philosophical grounds.   
In response, some scientists reluctantly acquiesced, dealing with complex contracts.  Others 
defied DuPont, sharing mice informally in the face of opposition from their universities.  Compromise 
emerged a decade later when the NIH persuaded  DuPont to sign a Memorandum of Understanding 
making Oncomice open for experimentation (a contract I analyze in Murray et al. 2008).  Behind the 
scenes other more complex changes were also taking place as scientists sought to reshape the meaning of 
patents in their daily life.  They used patents in new ways:  i) To delimit a protected arena for academic 
science, by inhibiting the ability of commercial actors to dominate the ways in which patented ideas could 
be used, ii) to redefine the terms of commercial-academic interchange forcing closer attention to 
inventorship and authorship, and iii) as incentives to transfer research tools into industry in the hope that 
they would be more widely available in academia.   At the broadest level, my Oncomouse research contributes to our understanding of boundaries 
where institutional logics overlap and conflict, explaining what happens when practices from on
institution (patents) cross the boundary and encroach into another institution (universities). My work 
highlights the active role of scientists in maintaining the distinction between academic and commercial 
science, doing so by taking the resources of the commercial logic (patents), transform their meaning and 
establishing hybrid exchange strategies.  Thus, contrary to the current literature, I argue that hybrids can 
emerge from conflict, exist in productive tension and are produced through boundary work to redefine but 
maintain the distinction between two logics.   The findings and theoretical insights from this study 
challenge the existing literature in several fields:  Scholars arguing that the normative order of academic 
science is a slender reed, easily overcome by the forces of commercialization, have reconsidered their 
views. Similarly those who suggest that science is unchanged must also consider the active and changing 
role of researchers in the scientific community. While it is true that patenting among academic scientists 
did increase in this period, many mouse geneticists  used patenting to maintain their boundary with 
commercial science not blur it. 
An important related lesson I take from the Oncomouse case and  elaborate in “Patenting Life: 
How the Oncomouse Patent Changed the Lives of Mice & Men” (Murray 2008b) is the power of 
individuals, communities and institutions to shape meaning. Patents are social constructions forged in the 
realm of commercial science. When patents are transplanted into the realm of academic science, the 
context shifts and, I show, their meaning is changed. Academic scientists adopted the practice but not all 
its commercial implications. Patents became more than a source of financial reward, evolving instead into 
a source of kudos and resistance but also collaboration and currency.  This suggests that we consider the 
complex and subtle ways in which academics have transformed both the practical and symbolic nature of 
patents and incorporated them as powerful elements in their daily life. 
Industry Transformation. Entrepreneurs also shape patents and the institutional logic of private 
property as they seek to shape IP in support of commercial science.  I characterized these transformations 
in “Entrepreneurs, Institutions and the Construction of Value in Biotechnology” (Kaplan & Murray 2008) 
-- an historical analysis of the biotechnology industry focused on the role of entrepreneurs in transforming 
institutions to construct value.  My work shows that while entrepreneurs in the early-stages of the industry 
did not attempt to broadly transform the meaning of IP rights, they did seek to shape the scope, strength 
and perception of patents. Their strategies included  amicus briefs in key Supreme Court cases (e.g. 
Diamond v. Chakrabarty), testimony in patent reform (e.g. utility requirements for gene patents), as well 
as direct patent litigation.  The broad aim was to reinforce the role of IP and appropriability as one pillar 
of economic value in the commercialization of biotech.  The success of entrepreneurs in convincing 
judges and policymakers to allow patents on genetically modified bacteria (for the production of drugs), on genetically modified mammals (such as the Oncomouse), on gene sequences and even on stem cells 
has transformed the nature of entrepreneurial firms and their commercial strategies.   
My research on the role of entrepreneurs and academic scientists shaping patents has contributed 
to the literature on institutional change.  At a more micro-level, it provides a deeper understanding of the 
mechanisms that shape the uncertain nature of IP,  thus contributing to our understanding of the causes 
and consequences of appropriability.  By taking IP  rights as malleable and endogenous to the strategies 
pursued by entrepreneurs and scientists -- instead of the traditional view, which takes IP as given and 
exogenous -- we can better understand the institutional foundations of the knowledge economy.  
 
Stream III. IP & Public Knowledge Accumulation  
Scientists (together with firms, judges, university administrators, and others) shape the ways in 
which the public and private institutional logics interact, and the meaning of patents and papers in these 
interactions.  Consequently, as the Oncomouse study shows, when institutions generate rules that enable 
knowledge to be embedded in patent-paper pairs, (potentially conflicting) relationships form with follow-
on researchers who hope to build cumulatively on this knowledge.  The role of patents in these exchanges 
and the differences in the institutional logic of private property compared to the open commons, has 
sparked scholars (particularly economists and legal  scholars) to debate whether patents diminish 
contributions to public domain by follow-on researchers.  The notion is that scientists, like mouse 
geneticists, are deterred by arduous licenses (or the threat of ex post IP enforcement).  In my quantitative 
work, I examine these claims using novel empirical data and methods: I estimate the casual impact of 
patent grant, enforcement and changes in IP-access contracts on cumulative innovation, specifically 
knowledge disclosed through follow-on publications (rather than patents).  Two key results suggest that 
the long-run production of public knowledge is highly sensitive to shifts in the openness of key early-
stage knowledge inputs:   
i.  Grant of the paired patent (a shift to lower openness) decreases follow-on innovation, particularly 
for public-sector researchers responding to private sector patents. 
   
ii.  Contractual agreements shifting knowledge to greater openness (contracts lowering the level of 
patent enforcement), increases follow-on innovation.   
 
The first of these papers, “Do Formal Intellectual Property Rights Hinder the Free Flow of 
Scientific Knowledge?”  (Murray & Stern 2007) establishes the novel empirical basis of this approach.  
We exploit two characteristics of patent-paper pairs:  First, we show that over 50% of publications in 
Nature Biotechnology are disclosed as patent-paper pairs.  Second, patents are granted with a 3-4 year lag 
with follow-on accumulation taking place in two distinct environments; the pre-grant period where 
informal norms hold and the post-grant period when IP rights can be enforced.  Using a differences-in-differences estimator we find a 10-20% decline in the citation rate to the paired publication after patent 
grant. A controversial finding, this evidence has been incorporated into National Academies of Sciences 
reports and is the subject of ongoing scholarly discussion. (The paper has been cited over 100 times).   
While these results are suggestive, in an argument developed in “Exploring the Foundations of 
Cumulative Innovation” (Murray & O’Mahony 2007), I posit that three conditions shape knowledge 
accumulation: disclosure, access and rewards, with each being shaped at the institutional, community and 
organizational levels.  Simply put, while patents may shape follow-on innovators, their influence is likely 
to be contoured by the organizational strategies of patent holders (or their licensees), the social context of 
follow-on innovators (i.e. whether they are in academia or industry) and the changing incentives they face.   
This suggests at least three unanswered questions: First, what is the impact of firm patent strategies on 
follow-on public knowledge accumulation? Second, do the social processes of academic communities 
ameliorate the impact of academic patents in a measurable way? Third, does changing licensing and 
enforcement have an ameliorating effect and if  so, for whom? I initiated three ambitious studies to 
address these issues.  
Mediating Impact of Firm Strategy.  Firm patent strategies in human genetics have a 
particularly powerful impact on public knowledge, compounded by the complex landscape of patents that 
emerges when firms (and universities) patent their ideas in this field.  In “Does Patent Strategy Shape the 
Long-Run Supply of Public Knowledge: Evidence from Human Genetics” (Huang & Murray 2008) we 
analyze the impact of firm patent strategy on long-run public knowledge accumulation.  Within the 
sample of 1,279 gene patent-paper pairs, we find  that private-sector patents have a more significant 
impact than public-sector owned patents on follow-on public knowledge accumulation.  The impact of 
these patents is increasing in the scope of the patents, in the gene’s link to human disease (particularly 
cancer) and in the fragmentation of ownership across  the patent landscape.  These conclusions inform 
policymakers considering patent reform and fill a gap in our understanding of firm strategy.  In particular, 
while knowledge-based firms seeking competitive advantage often draw on public knowledge to create 
patented knowledge, prior to our studies, there was a limited understand of the converse relationship – the 
impact of these patent strategies on public knowledge production.   
Mediating Impact of the Academic Community. The impact of patent grant on public 
knowledge accumulation comes in large part from the actual (or expected) enforcement of patent rights.  
This is not limited to industry ownership.  For example, as I described in “The Stem Cell Market: Patents 
& the Pursuit of Scientific Progress” (Murray 2007) published in The New England Journal of Medicine, 
the University of Wisconsin aggressively enforced its human embryonic stem cell patents on other 
academics and on industry researchers.  It used its control over research materials (that can anyway be 
restricted without IP rights) and over the patented methods.  However, over time it reduced its demands 
after being pressured by academic scientists.  In “Learning to Live with Patents: Assessing the Impact of Legal Institutional Change on the Life Science Community” (Murray & Stern 2008), we build on 
examples such as these to argue more generally that researchers respond to constraints imposed by IP in 
two distinct (but potentially co-existing) ways: acquiescence and adaptation.  We tested this notion on our 
sample of Nature Biotechnology patent-paper pairs.  We show that these two processes unfold over time 
and have a shifting impact on follow-on innovation.  Moreover, adaptation is more rapid for high-status 
academics than their low-status counterparts, highlighting the importance of the social organization of 
science in shaping the response to IP.  More broadly, our work initiates further studies of the role of legal 
institutions in the structure and practices of scientific communities. 
Industry-Academic Interaction:  The DuPont-NIH Memorandum of Understanding in 
1999/2000 reducing enforcement of the Oncomouse (and Cre-lox) patents provides the final setting in 
which I examine the causal impact of these shifts to greater openness as described in “Of Mice and 
Academics: The Role of Openness in Science” (Murray et al. 2008).  This paper deepens our 
understanding of how increasing openness shapes follow-on innovation, by exploring what types of 
researchers and research projects are most likely affected by such changes.  The main contribution of this 
work is to move beyond the simple idea that reducing IP changes the incentives to increase follow-on 
research.  Instead, this paper emphasizes that openness is also crucial to the establishment of many 
diverse new research projects – a feature we measure by capturing follow-on research by new researchers 
using new key words.  Analyzing 2,230 mouse-papers (describing engineered mice) we find strong 
evidence for these effects, disentangling the impact of IP licensing agreements on scientific communities 
subject to different rules and norms of openness. 
Taken together these three papers provide rich quantitative insights into the ways in which firms 
and universities use IP to shape follow-on scientific knowledge production, and reciprocally, how the 
social organization of science shapes the response.  More than simply linking patents to public knowledge 
production, this work examines how particular patent strategies and enforcement contracts contour 
accumulation.  Furthermore, it describes the type of knowledge being accumulated, distinguishing new 
versus old research lines, new versus existing researchers etc.  For those interested in economic growth 
and innovation, it begins to articulate the dynamics of researchers’ entry and exit into particular research 
lines.  It also helps explain how a complex of economic and social factors shapes the entry of researchers 
into scientific fields and their subsequent performance.  This builds up the micro-foundations of scientific 
progress because it is through these dynamics that the trajectories of innovative progress are made.  It also 
suggests new research questions for scholars of IP strategy, expanding their focus to include the public 
commons as well as private property.  Specifically this work suggests that the public commons are highly 
sensitive to patent strategy.  Thus, before we conclude that open innovation strategies are a way of getting 
“something for nothing” we must consider whether they limit the long-run production of the very public 
goods upon which firms have come to rely. FUTURE DIRECTIONS 
My future research expands my focus in two directions.  First, I have started to examine 
institutions other than IP.  I am considering the impact of a broader range of institutional changes on 
knowledge production in scientific communities in the US and beyond: restrictions on research agendas, 
access provisions to scientific knowledge, and changes  in scientific governance.  This research aims to 
contribute more broadly to our understanding of the organizational and institutional foundations of 
scientific work.  Second, my focus has expanded to explore in detail the strategies firms pursue as they 
seek to contribute to and benefit from public (common) knowledge production with a wide array of 
parties.  This includes sharing of clinical trial data among firms, exchange of patient tissues, genomes and 
genealogies between firms and individuals, and materials sharing in fields such as chemistry and 
nanotechnology. It is a line of research that I expect will contribute to our understanding of organizations 
and communities operating at the intersection of commercial (particularly legal) and public institutions. 
In conclusion, the overarching ambition of my work is to deepen our understanding of scientific 
progress at the intersection of academic and commercial  institutions.  In doing so, I plan to reveal the 
social and economic micro-foundations of scientific progress to the point where they provide clear, 
predictive insights.  This agenda will continue to require a careful  balance of in-depth fieldwork and 
novel empirical methods, combined with a broad understanding of the relevant theoretical debates.  The 
results should deepen our insights into which individuals, firms and nations are able to build cumulative 
advantage from science, expand our understanding of the social organization of scientific communities 
and their institutional foundations in the modern economy.
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