Date of Award

May 2015

Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy



First Advisor

Rebecca Neumann

Committee Members

Itziar Lazkano, Matthew McGinty, Hamid Mohtadi, Suyong Song


Environmental Policy, Financial Openness, Patents, R&d, Renewable Energy


This dissertation is comprised of three empirical essays on technological change. The first chapter examines how industrial R&D intensities respond to environmental regulations when considering specific industry characteristics such as pollution intensity and immobility. Specifically, I study the impact of environmental regulations on R&D intensities in 21 manufacturing industries in 28 OECD countries from 2000-2007. I consider pollution intensity and the relative ease of relocation (immobility) as industry characteristics that determine the optimal industry response to increased environmental policy stringency. I find that more pollution intensive industries innovate less as regulatory environments become more restrictive relative to less pollution intensive industries. At the same time, more immobile industries innovate more than more mobile industries as environmental regulations become more stringent, illustrating innovation as an alternative to relocation. In the second chapter, I investigate how energy prices and production, government investment in R&D, and similarities in environmental regulations may influence international collaboration on energy patents. I study the propensity to collaboratively innovate by examining counts of renewable energy and alternative energy patents from 1994-2008 that have multiple inventors that are located in more than one country. Using a gravity model framework, I demonstrate that technological similarity, common languages, trade relationships, and similarity in environmental regulations are important drivers of collaboration in these technologies. When examining collaboration between advanced and developing countries, however, higher production of natural gas in developing countries and stronger environmental regulations in advanced nations positively affects the probability of collaboration. The third chapter explores the role of international financial openness on industrial R&D intensities. International financial integration may provide an important channel of financing for research and development (R&D) that ultimately enhances economic growth. This chapter extends the analysis of Maskus et al. (2012) by examining the impact of refined measures of international financial openness, capital controls, and financial structure on R&D intensities in 22 manufacturing industries in 18 OECD countries for the period 1990-2003. We interact these country-level financial measures with industry characteristics, namely dependence on external financing and the amount of tangible assets. Our findings indicate that multiple capital openness indices and financial structure measures are important determinants of R&D intensity. These refined measures indicate that the significance of FDI as an international financial development measure is driven primarily by external FDI assets. This may indicate that multinational firms are able to access funds from affiliate firms abroad, and use such funds as an important source of financing R&D expenditures.