In recent years firms have started to offshore their innovation activities to emerging economies. This paper investigates the implications of innovation offshoring for productivity growth in a two-country framework that features a tension between access to technical knowledge and low-cost high-skilled labor in the innovation location decision. Industry and innovation tend to concentrate in the asset-wealthy country when trade costs are relatively high. A positive relationship between innovation costs and industry concentration then ensures that improved international knowledge diffusion coincides with an increase in net offshoring flows in innovation from the asset-wealthy country to the asset-poor country, and potentially with faster productivity growth.
innovation offshoring international knowledge diffusion endogenous productivity growth process innovation industry location international trade