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The Economics of Technological Diffusion


This volume presents the first comprehensive, detailed, and up-to-date overview of the economics of technological diffusion. By organizing past articles under themes and providing introductory chapters for each theme, Stoneman has created a highly accessible and sophisticated volume that goes beyond a textbook. This mix of classical and original material is the most authoritative overview of the literature in each topic. The key topics covered are:

  • theory, empirics, and policy.
  • technology and trade.
  • the theory and practice of technology policy.
  • finance and technological change.
  • R&D and diffusion.
  • measuring both technological change and its impact.
  • game theoretic modelling of technological change.

The quality and scope of the contributions ensures that the book uniquely covers all of this field's various dimensions while achieving the necessary depth of analysis. The articles are specifically designed to be both rigorous and accessible.

This book is an essential text and reference for those in the fields of the economics of technological diffusion, industrial organization and science, and technology policy. The material is accessible to students, researchers, and those working or setting policy in these fields.

Paul Stoneman is Research Professor and Head of the Technological Innovations Research Unit at Warwick Business School. In addition to his research activities he has also acted as an adviser and consultant to both government and private companies on technology-related issues. He is editor of The Handbook of the Economics of Innovation and Technological Change (Blackwell).
List of Tables.

List of Figures.


Part I: Introduction and Empirical Observations Upon the Diffusion Process.

1. By Way of an Introduction and Guide.

2. Empirical Patterns in the Diffusion of Innovations.

Part II: The Theory of Technological Diffusion.

3. The Intertemporal Demand for Stand-alone Technologies.

4. Risk and Uncertainty.

5. Multiple Technologies, Complementary Inputs, Network Externalities and General Purpose Technologies.

6. The Supply Side.

Part III: Empirical Analysis of the Diffusion of New Technology.

7. Empirical Analysis: An Overview.

8. Rank, Stock, Order and Epidemic Effects in Diffusion of New Process Technologies: An Empirical Model.

9. The Diffusion of Multiple Process Technologies.

10. Testing Alternative Models of New Product Diffusion.

Part IV: Diffusion Policy.

11. Diffusion Policy: An Introduction.

12. Technology Diffusion and Public Policy.

13. Technological Diffusion Expectations and Welfare.

14. Adoption Subsidies vs. Information Provision as Instruments of Technology Policy.

15. The Role of Regulation, Fiscal Incentives and Changes in Taste in the Diffusion of Unleaded Petrol.

Part V: Extensions, Applications and Implications.

16. Diffusion Analysis: The Wider Implications.

17. Technology Adoption and Firm Profitability.

18. Employment, Technological Diffusion and Oligopoly.

19. Technological Opportunity, Technological Diffusion and Gross Investment: An Inter Industry Approach.

20. Future Research Agendas.