Financialization, R&D, Patents and Development

Paper Session

Saturday, Jan. 7, 2017 10:15 AM – 12:15 PM

Swissotel Chicago, Monte Rosa
Hosted By: Union for Radical Political Economics
  • Chair: Nathaniel Cline, University of Redlands

Mexico’s Subordinated Financialization

Sergio Camara-Izquierdo
Metropolitan Autonomous University-Azcapotzalco


The neoliberal articulation of Mexico to the world market based on an export-oriented maquila sector, as a result of the and anti-labor bias and the trade opening, and on the freedom of financial flows, as a result of the financialization, has led to a productive, demand and financial structure highly dependent on the rest of the world, especially on the United States. The present paper shows the intertwined relationship between the Mexican neoliberal productive structure and its external financial dependence, labelled as subordinated financialization. On the one hand, the competitiveness pattern based on advantages related to the flexibilization of the working day, the intensification of work, and the decline in real wages favor labor-intensive production processes to the detriment of the investment in new technologies. Therefore, the implementation of wage restraint policies, and anti-labor policies in general, has become a permanent necessity, rather than a choice of policy, in order to promote the allocation of the big transnational corporations in Mexico.

Financialization and an Era of Crisis on Capitalism

Filipe Possa Ferreira
University of Campinas


This paper aims to present the different faces of a new crisis era in capitalism through its supreme phenomenon, the financialization. First of all, an understanding about the concept of financialization is needed when a numerous of authors have different views of it, thus a typology for financialization concept will be present. Then, to symbolize the beginning of an era, the apogee was represented, even for just a fraction, for the 2008 financial crisis and its consequences symbolize the contemporary forces of finance capital over the economics, socials and politics spheres. A detailed understanding using what Marx introduced, and Rudolph Hilferding improved, presents that finance capital form is potentiated in all economic agents. The reproduction of this new pattern in capitalism consistently predicts a continuous and unleash expansion of financialization, representing an increasingly instable, uncertain and destructive system.

Is There a Link Between Strengthening Global Patent Rights and Falling Employment in Patent-Intensive Industries?

Mike Palmedo
American University


Domestic employment in the industries identified by the Commerce Department as reliant upon patent protection fell between 1990 and 2010, both absolutely and relative to other industries. During this period, the World Trade Organization created the first globally enforceable patent rules (the TRIPS Agreement, subject to WTO dispute resolution), which were gradually adopted by low and middle income countries. This study tests whether the global strengthening of patent rights contributed to the decline in U.S. employment in the patent-intensive industries, by allowing U.S. firms to establish operations in countries where the previous possibility of intellectual property theft would have prevented such investments. It relies upon Census Bureau domestic and FDI-affiliate employment data, and the Park Index of patent rights, which has quantified the evolving strength of patent protection in 110 countries. A finding that strengthened patent rights overseas have had a negative impact on U.S. employment would contradict both conservative and liberal policymakers who have justified the inclusion of stronger patent rules in trade agreements as a driver of American jobs in these industries.

Subsumed Class Payments on R&D: An Empirical Study

Mohammad Moeini-Feizabdai
University of Massachusetts-Amherst


The paper studies, from an empirical perspective, the role played by Research and
Development (R&D) in the process of production and appropriation of surplus-value, as
well as in the process of realization of profit. R&D activities are financed either by
private sector through distribution of surplus-value (gross profit in mainstream theory)
already produced by business firms and realized in the market-place, or by the
government through fiscal allotments. Surplus-value must be distributed in order to
secure the conditions that are necessary for the very production of surplus-value in future.
The paper tries to shed some light on the dynamics of the production and
reproduction of capital as far as expenditures on R&D are concerned. A Marxian class
analytic framework will be adopted in order to study the dynamical relationship between
the production of surplus-value and its distribution to R&D.
William McColloch
Keene State College
Robert Chernomas
University of Manitoba
Mehrene Larudee
Hampshire College
Terrence McDonough
National University of Ireland Galway
JEL Classifications
  • E1 - General Aggregative Models
  • O1 - Economic Development