Technological development and foreign patenting: Evidence from 19th-Century Australia

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Poor patenting performance is often taken as a sign of low inventiveness. This article explores this belief by looking at the case of 19th-century Victoria, where the level of foreign patenting consistently grew at a much faster rate than that of local patenting. By mapping movements in both foreign and Australian revealed technological advantage in Victoria in this period, this article demonstrates that this faster rate of foreign patenting was due not to the technological weaknesses of the Australian colonies, but rather to the nature and timing of their economic development.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)344-359
Number of pages16
JournalExplorations in Economic History
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 1999

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