, Volume 47, Issue 2, pp 389–412 | Cite as

Technological Relevance of Science: An Assessment of Citation Linkages between Patents and Research Papers

  • R. J. W. Tussen
  • R. K. Buter
  • Th. N. van Leeuwen


Patent citations to the research literature offer a way for identifying and comparing contributions of scientific and technical knowledge to technological development. This case study applies this approach through a series of analyses of citations to Dutch research papers listed on Dutch-invented and foreign patents granted in the US during the years 1987–1996.

First, we examined the general validity and utility of these data as input for quantitative analyses of science-technology interactions. The findings provide new empirical evidence in support of the general view that these citations reflect genuine links between science and technology. The results of the various analyses reveal several important features of industrially relevant Dutch science: (1) the international scientific impact of research papers that are also highly cited by patents, (2) the marked rise in citations to Dutch papers on foreign-invented patents; (3) the large share of author-inventor self-citations in Dutch-invented patents; (4) the growing relevance of the life sciences, (5) an increase in the importance of scientific co-operation. We also find significant differences between industrial sectors as well as major contributions of large science-based multinational enterprises, such as Philips, in domestic science-technology linkages.

The paper concludes by discussing general benefits and limitations of this bibliometric approach for macro-level analysis of science bases in advanced industrialised countries like the Netherlands.


Research Paper Technical Knowledge Patent Citation Multinational Enterprise Marked Rise 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Kline, S. J., N. Rosenberg, An overview of innovation. In: R. Landau, N. Rosenberg (Eds) The positive sum game: harnessing technology for economic growth. Washington DC: National Academy Press, 1986.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Martin, B., A. Salter, D. Hicks, K. Pavitt, J. Senker, M. Scharp, N. Von Tunzelman, The relationship between publicly funded basic research and economic performance. Report for HM Treasury, Brighton: SPRU, 1996.Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    David, P. A., D. Mowery, E. Steinmuller, Analysing the economic payoffs from basic research, Economics of Innovation and New Technology, 2 (1993) 73-90.Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Mansfield, E., Academic research and innovation, Research Policy, 20 (1991) 1-12.Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Mansfield, E., Academic research underlying industrial innovations: sources, characteristics and financing, Review of Economic and Statistics, 77 (1995) 55-62.Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Mansfield, E., Academic research and industrial innovation: an update of empirical findings, Research Policy, 26 (1998) 773-776.Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Archibugi, D., Patenting as an indicator of technological innovation: a review, Science and Public Policy, 19 (1992) 357-368.Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Coward, H. R., J. J. Franklin, Identifying the science-technology interface: matching patent data to a bibliometric model, Science, Technology & Human Values, 14 (1989) 50-77.Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Noyons, E. C. M., A. F. J. Van Raan, H. Grupp, U. Schmoch, Exploring the science and technology interface: inventor-author relations in laser medicines research, Research Policy, 23 (1994) 443-457.Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Carpenter, M. P., M. Cooper, F. Narin, Linkage between basic research and patents, Research Management, 23 (1980) 30-35.Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Narin, F., E. Noma, Is technology becoming science?, Scientometrics, 7 (1985) 369-381.Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    Narin, F., D. Olivastro, Status report: linkage between technology and science, Research Policy, 21 (1992) 237-249.Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    Narin, F., K. S. Hamilton, D. Olivastro, Linkage between agency-supported research and patented industrial technology, Research Evaluation, 5 (1995) 183-187.Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    Narin, F., K. S. Hamilton, D. Olivastro, The increasing linkage between US technology and public science, Research Policy, 26 (1997) 317-330.Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    Narin, F., D. Olivastro, Linkage between patents and papers: an interim EPO/US comparison, Scientometrics, 41 (1998) 51-59.Google Scholar
  16. 16.
    Meyer, M., Does science push technology? Patents citing scientific literature (forthcoming in Research Policy).Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    Schmoch, U., Tracing the knowledge transfer from science to technology as reflected in patent indicators, Scientometrics, 26 (1993) 193-211.Google Scholar
  18. 18.
    Collins, P., S. Wyatt, Citations to patents in the basic research literature, Research Policy, 17 (1988) 65-74.Google Scholar
  19. 19.
    Narin, F., M. Rosen, D. Olivastro, Patent citation analysis: new validation studies and linkage statistics. In: Van Raan A. F. J. et al. (Eds), Science and technology indicators: their use in science policy and their role in science studies. Leiden: DSWO Press, 1989.Google Scholar
  20. 20.
    Grupp, H., U. Schmoch, Perceptions of scientification of innovation as measured by referring between patents and papers: dynamics in science-based fields of technology. In: Grupp, H. (Ed.), Dynamics of science-based innovation. Berlin: Springer-Verlag, 1992.Google Scholar
  21. 21.
    Hicks, D., P. Isard, B. Martin, A morphology of Japanese and European corporate research networks, Research Policy, 25 (1996) 359-378.Google Scholar
  22. 22.
    Godin, B., Research and the practice of publication in industries, Research Policy, 25 (1996) 587-606.Google Scholar
  23. 23.
    Tijssen, R. J. W., Th. N. Van Leeuwen, J. C. Korevaar, Scientific publication activity of industry in the Netherlands, Research Evaluation, 6 (1996) 1-15.Google Scholar
  24. 24.
    Tijssen, R. J. W., Th. N. Van Leeuwen, H. Hollanders, B. Verspagen, Netherlands Observatory of Science and Technology: Science and Technology Indicators 1998: English summary version, Leiden/Maastricht: CWTS/MERIT, 1998.Google Scholar
  25. 25.
    Grupp, H., U. Schmoch, Patent statistics in the age of globalisation: new legal procedures, new analytical methods, new economic interpretation, Research Policy, 28 (1999) 377-396.Google Scholar
  26. 26.
    Carpenter, M. P., F. Narin, Validation study: patent citations as indicators of science and foreign dependence, World Patent Information, 5 (1983) 180-185.Google Scholar
  27. 27.
    Meyer, M., Patents citing scientific literature: is the relationship causal or casual? The IPTS Report, No. 28 (1998) 11-18.Google Scholar
  28. 28.
    Griliches, Z., Patent statistics as economic indicators: a survey, Journal of Economic Literature, 28 (1990) 1661-1707.Google Scholar
  29. 29.
    National Science Foundation, Science & Engineering Indicators 1998, National Science Board, Arlington, 1998.Google Scholar
  30. 30.
    Narula R, J. Hagedoorn, Innovating through strategic alliances: moving towards ínternatíonal partnerships and contractual agreements, Technovation, 19 (1999) 283-294.Google Scholar
  31. 31.
    Anderson, J., N. Williams, D. Seemungal, F. Narin, D. Olivastro, Human genetic technology: exploring the links between science and technology. Technology Analysis & Strategic Management, 8 (1996) 135-156.Google Scholar
  32. 32.
    European Commission, Second European Report on S&T Indicators Report 1997, Brussels, 1997.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Akadémiai Kiadó, Budapest 2000

Authors and Affiliations

  • R. J. W. Tussen
    • 1
  • R. K. Buter
    • 1
  • Th. N. van Leeuwen
    • 1
  1. 1.Centre for Science and Technology Studies (CWTS)Leiden UniversityLeidenThe Netherlands

Personalised recommendations