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Julia Olmos-Peñuela;Paul Benneworth;Elena Castro-Martínez


The recognition of academic research as a potential source of economic growth and social welfare has attracted the attention of both policymakers and academics over the past decades. Incentives have been introduced by policymakers to encourage academics to make their research accessible to wider audiences to improve societal benefits. Academics may work as part of collaborative R&D teams that help to benefit their research, such as to increase academic access to facilities and resources. However, this engagement may come with a potential cost or what has sometimes been referred to as the “dark side of collaboration.” Engaging with non-academic partners in collaborative R&D projects can have restrictive effects on academic research, as non-academic partners may have rights over emerging knowledge, and may choose to restrict more comprehensive access to that knowledge. This, in turn, can have deleterious and discouraging effects for those academics, and indeed undermine those academics’ willingness to engage in R&D project collaborations. In this chapter, we operationalize the idea of “restrictive” engagement and ask what determines whether researchers are willing to engage in potentially restrictive collaborative R&D activities.

Year of publication 2021