Wednesday, October 07, 2015


UTSA scholar encourages developing countries to strengthen intellectual property rights

Hamid Beladi

Hamid Beladi

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(Oct. 25, 2013) -- After several years of research in the field of international trade and intellectual property rights, Hamid Beladi, UTSA economics professor and associate dean of research for the UTSA College of Business, and his co-authors have determined that if a developing country strengthens its intellectual property rights policies, its local firms will be in a better position to specialize in and accept international research and development (R&D) contracts.

This finding fills a gap in the international trade policy literature by offering a new perspective on the importance of intellectual property rights affecting R&D activities in developing countries. The current literature discusses only the need for developing countries to strengthen their intellectual property rights to support local innovation, economic growth and technology.

In recent decades, increasing globalization has created an environment in which businesses rely on suppliers located in different countries to assist them with different stages of production. Today's multinational firms are under increasing pressure to reduce their R&D costs. In the same way that a wireless phone company based in the United States might outsource all or part of its customer service to a developing country to save costs, large multinational firms now are outsourcing the R&D phase of their new innovations to local firms in developing countries.

In the pharmaceutical industry, for example, the largest multinationals, such as Merck, Eli Lilly and Johnson & Johnson, are partnering with firms in developing countries such as India, China and Brazil to carry out sophisticated drug research and clinical testing.

The information technology industry also has witnessed the rapid expansion of offshore R&D outsourcing. Many multinational IT firms, including Dell, Motorola and Philips, are not only purchasing wireless phones from Asian developers but also many of the newest services available for mobile use.

"The question we wanted to answer was how these local firms could make adjustments to their intellectual property rights policies to be better prepared to work with multinational firms without getting taken advantage of," said Beladi. "Ultimately, our theory supports both the local and multinational firms in this era of internationalization of R&D activities."

Beladi and his co-authors suggest that strengthening intellectual property rights can have the following benefits on developing countries:

  • Both local firms and multinationals will begin to specialize in one stage of R&D, creating a "specialization effect"
  • Local firms that once were considered imitators or a threat to multinational firms will switch their position and become innovators or subcontractors of multinationals.
  • It increases the chance multinationals will subcontract R&D with local firms. This "subsidizing effect" is beneficial to both local and multinational firms.
  • Local firms will move into a better bargaining position and multinational firms are able to save significant costs by contracting their R&D to local firms.
  • Multinationals may increase their Foreign Direct Investment in a developing country by adding offshore R&D subsidiary companies within the developing country.

The researchers' findings will be forthcoming in a leading academic journal. Beladi hopes to be able to use the findings to influence policymakers in developing countries.

Nationally ranked and recognized, the UTSA College of Business is accredited by AACSB International and enrolls 5,200 students. The college is dedicated to raising its academic profile to become one of the best business schools.



Oct. 5, 6 p.m.

Film Screening: The Head of Joaquin Murrieta by John Valadez

The Mexican American Studies Program will host a screening of this irreverent, entertaining and often disturbing tale that uses both fiction and documentary story telling devices to tear open a painful and long ignored history: the lynching of Mexican Americans in the southwest.
Buena Vista Building Aula Canaria (BV 1.328), Downtown Campus

Oct. 6, 3 p.m.

State of the University

Join President Ricardo Romo as he gives his address to the UTSA community.
H-E-B University Center Ballroom (UC 1.104), Main Campus

Oct. 7, 6:30 p.m.

The Impact of the 84th Texas Legislative Session on Public Schools: Any Rain in Sight or Are Those Smoke Clouds on the Horizon?

Join the College of Education and Human Development's Center for Educational Leadership, Policy and Professional Development for a discussion about what passed and what didn't in the last legislative session and what it means for Bexar County Public Schools. 
Durango Building Southwest Room (DB 1.124), Main Campus

Oct. 8, 10 a.m.

Graduate Fair

Graduate School representatives from across the country will provide information on options after earning a bachelor's degree. Students, alumni and community members are welcome.
University Center Retama Galleria, Main Campus

Oct. 10, 8:30 a.m. - 3 p.m.

UTSA CITE Technology Entrepreneurship Boot Camp

Kickstart your career as an entrepreneur at The University of Texas at San Antonio’s Center for Innovation, Technology and Entrepreneurship (CITE) Technology Entrepreneurship Boot Camp.
Business Building, Richard S. Liu Auditorium (BB 2.01.02), Main Campus

Oct. 14, 5:30 p.m.

Architecture as Rendered Society

The UTSA College of Architecture, Construction and Planning, in partnership with AIA San Antonio’s Latinos in Architecture, presents architect Andrés Jaque, founder of the Office for Political Innovation, an architectural practice dually based in New York and Madrid.
Buena Vista Building, Aula Canaria Lecture Hall (BV 1.328), Downtown Campus

Oct. 20-21, 9 a.m. - 3 p.m.

SECC Book Sale

Looking for a good read? Shop for yourself or for gifts and help change a life at the same time. Browse and buy children’s stories, novels and more at the 2015 SECC Book Sale.
Sombrilla Plaza, Main Campus

Oct. 27, 11:30 a.m.

Lecture by Composer Larry Groupe

The UTSA Music Department presents Emmy-award winning Composer Larry Groupe. Groupe has composed music for films such as "The Contender," "Straw Dogs" and "Miami Vice," and TV shows such as "Star Trek: The Next Generation," "Ren and Stimpy" and "American Gladiators." Lecture is free and open to the public.
Arts Building (2.03.15-18), Main Campus

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Did You Know?

UTSA writes the book on all-digital libraries

As touch screens and e-books demand more and more attention from both casual readers and scholars, many people say the handwriting is on the wall for the printed page.

At UTSA, the handwriting is on the wall for a library that doesn't have any printed books.

Since March 2010, the bookless library in the Applied Engineering and Technology Building has given UTSA students an innovative way to read, research and work with each other to solve problems.

With ultra-modern furniture and a décor featuring desktop computers, scanners and LCD screens, the AET Library is designed to engage students in an online format. But it also offers group study niches and study rooms with whiteboards and glass walls on which students can write. The space encourages teamwork, communications and problem solving for the next generation of scientists and professional engineers.

Did you know? The UTSA AET Library is the nation's first completely bookless library on a college or university campus. It served as a model for Bexar County's first-in-the-nation public bookless library system and one of its branches, the Dr. Ricardo Romo BiblioTech.

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