Essays in Industrial Organization
Three research papers, all broadly focused on industrial organization, comprise the chapters of this dissertation. Although all these papers address market inefficiencies that arise in various industry setting, the first paper differs in theme and scope from the rest of the dissertation.
The first chapter, "Switching costs and entry in the mortgage industry", investigates the impact of switching costs and entry on the interest rate spread in the mortgage industry. I use enactment of anti-predatory lending laws across the U.S. to measure a reduction in borrowers' switching costs. The empirical findings show that both entry and interest rate spread rise with the advent of these laws because these laws enable low-quality applicants to obtain financing more easily than before. The results suggest that lower switching costs exacerbate the adverse selection problem, so policies that reduce these costs may not produce clear benefits.
The second chapter, "Information leakage and stability of research joint ventures in a differentiated product market", analyzes the impact of information leakage on research Joint venture's (RJV) stability and R&D expenditure in a heterogeneous product market. Firms solve their problem in three stages: in the first stage firms decide whether to join a RJV, in the second stage firms decide on the level of information sharing, and in the final stage firms engage in Cournot competition. Main results indicate a U-shaped curve between venture's size and product differentiation when leakage is high. This research can offer a better understanding of RJVs and provide insight into policies and actions necessary to promote R&D and better flow of information in the innovation sector.
The third chapter, "The impact of information leakage and product differentiation on the research joint venture's size and R&D", empirically examines theory set forth in the second chapter. The study uses data on RJVs from the NIST's ATP program. As a measure of information leakage, we use a percentage of all patent litigation cases within a RJV that are valid. The main results reveal that information leakage is not a determining factor in ventures choice to include other firms and engage in cooperative R&D.