How patents, prizes and subsidies affect idea creation
Acton Institute Powerblog

How patents, prizes and subsidies affect idea creation

Note: This is post #85 in a weekly video series on basic economics.

The last entry in this series considered how institutions can incentivize the creation of new ideas. Because of this connection, the Founding Fathers wrote a protection mechanism for new ideas into the U.S. Constitution in the form of patents.

But are patents the only (or even best) way to reward good ideas?

In this video by Marginal Revolution University, Alex Tabarrok examines two more incentive options: prizes, and subsidies.

(If you find the pace of the videos too slow, I’d recommend watching them at 1.5 to 2 times the speed. You can adjust the speed at which the video plays by clicking on “Settings” (the gear symbol) and changing “Speed” from normal to 1.25, 1.5 or 2.)

Click here to see other videos in the Introduction to Economics series.

Joe Carter

Joe Carter is a Senior Editor at the Acton Institute. Joe also serves as an editor at the The Gospel Coalition, a communications specialist for the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention, and as an adjunct professor of journalism at Patrick Henry College. He is the editor of the NIV Lifehacks Bible and co-author of How to Argue like Jesus: Learning Persuasion from History's Greatest Communicator (Crossway).