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Young, Restless and Creative: Openness to Disruption and Creative Innovations

Ufuk Akcigit (), Murat Celik and Daron Acemoglu

No 377, 2014 Meeting Papers from Society for Economic Dynamics

Abstract: This paper argues that openness to new, unconventional and disruptive ideas has a first-order impact on creative innovations---innovations that break new ground in terms of knowledge creation. After presenting a motivating model focusing on the choice between incremental and radical innovation, and on how managers of different ages and human capital are sorted across different types of firms, we provide cross-country, firm-level and patent-level evidence consistent with this pattern. Our measures of creative innovations proxy for innovation quality (average number of citations per patent) and creativity (fraction of superstar innovators, the likelihood of a very high number of citations, and generality of patents). Our main proxy for openness to disruption is manager age. This variable is based on the idea that only companies or societies open to such disruption will allow the young to rise up within the hierarchy. Using this proxy at the country, firm or patent level, we present robust evidence that openness to disruption is associated with more creative innovations.

New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-cse, nep-ino and nep-tid
Date: 2014
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Related works:
Working Paper: Young, Restless and Creative: Openness to Disruption and Creative Innovations (2014) Downloads
Working Paper: Young, Restless and Creative: Openness to Disruption and Creative Innovations (2014) Downloads
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