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Journal of Social Economics Research

March 2020, Volume 7, 1, pp 35-41

Intellectual Property Rights, Human Capital and Innovation in Emerging and Developing Countries

Kamilia Loukil

Kamilia Loukil 1

  1. PhD in Economics, Faculty of Economics and Management, University of Sfax, Tunisia. 1

on Google Scholar
on PubMed

Pages: 35-41

DOI: 10.18488/journal.35.2020.71.35.41

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Article History:

Received: 19 November, 2019
Revised: 30 December, 2019
Accepted: 04 February, 2020
Published: 16 March, 2020


The innovation literature suggests that the protection of Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) is a key determinant of innovation. Recent studies suggest that IPR protection stimulates innovation only under certain conditions. In this paper, we suppose that IPR have a positive impact on technological innovation only in countries with high levels of human capital. The objective of this study is to examine the relationship between intellectual property rights, human capital and technological innovation in the context of emerging and developing countries. To measure innovation, we use the number of patents granted to inventors in a country by the United States Patent and Trademark Office. IPR variable is the Ginarte and Park index, while the stock of human capital is measured by the percentage of the total enrollment among the school-aged population over 15 at the tertiary level. Panel Threshold Regression is applied to data of 46 developing countries for the period 1980-2009. The estimation results provide evidence for the existence of nonlinear relationship between intellectual property rights and innovation depending on human capital’s initial level.
Contribution/ Originality
This study is one of very few studies which have investigated the relationship between intellectual property rights, human capital and technological innovation in emerging and developing countries.


Intellectual property rights, innovation, Non linear relationship, Human capital, Emerging, Developing countries.


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This study received no specific financial support.

Competing Interests:

The author declares that there are no conflicts of interests regarding the publication of this paper.


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