This research proposal aims at underscoring the role that human capital plays in the generation and diffusion of knowledge. To accomplish this task we will construct a unique data set that combines patent statistics from Danish firms that patent with detailed information on: (i) the patenting firms and (ii) the employees.

The proposal falls in two parts: The first part starts by generating a typology of patenting activity by Danish firms. This will, to the best of our knowledge, provide the first systematic evidence on patent activity in Denmark. Although there is vast research on firms innovative activities, little is known about the importance of human capital as an input to R&D. Our matched employer/employee/patent data set will enable us to include detailed information on employees education and work experience in the estimations of firms patenting activity.

In second part we plan to study labor turnover as a source of technology spillovers between firms. We will use detailed information on the movements of employees across firms to test whether labor mobility creates technology spillovers and if it does how important these spillovers are for innovation. We will also empirically test the predictions of a growing theoretical literature on technology spillovers.

More information can be found at the internet site of Centre for Economic and Business Research - CEBR.


Statens Samfundsvidenskabelige Forskningsråd (Danish Research Council) , Kopenhagen , DK

Project duration

01.01.2004 - 28.02.2007

Cooperation partner

Prof. Andrea Fosfuri, Ph. D., Universidad Carlos III de Madrid, Madrid, ES
Prof. Dr. Ulrich Kaiser, University of Southern Denmark: Odense University, Odense, DK
Prof. Thomas Rønde, Ph. D., University of Copenhagen, Kopenhagen, DK
Cédric Schneider, Centre for Economic and Business Research, Kopenhagen, DK