Economics Essay Example: Free Enterprise and Innovation, 1790-2010

Published: 2022-09-20
Economics Essay Example: Free Enterprise and Innovation, 1790-2010
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  United States Economics
Pages: 2
Wordcount: 534 words
5 min read

Enterprise and innovation have played a significant role in the growth and dominance of the United States of America economy. This has been facilitated by the creation of an enabling legal, political and economic environment. Different political and economic factors such as reduced market regulation and the availability of investors have significantly promoted the spirit of enterprise and innovation while legal aspects have protected innovation and enterprises operations and products. This paper will assess different legal, political, and economic matters that have contributed to innovation and enterprise development in the United States of America.

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Political Factors

The democratization of patents and political support of innovation and enterprise through legal enactments that supported and protected innovation played a significant role in the development of the US as an economic giant. The political leaders of the United States have always recognized the importance of innovation and supported its basic foundations through investments and legislation such as patents. In 1790, George Washington address to Congress identified commerce and innovation as a significant approach of improving the nation's economy.

Legal Factors

Legal factors such as patents played a significant role in innovation and enterprise development in the United States because it facilitated intellectual property rights on technology and other items owned by small businesses. A patent is a property right that is recognized and respected by the US government and played a significant role in enterprise development. Article 1, section 8 of the US Constitution holds that Congress has the power to promote science and arts by securing authors and investor's exclusive right to their discoveries and writings. The Copyright Act of 1790 is an example of an American law that has facilitated innovation by ensuring that scientists and businesses benefit from their inventions.

Economic Factors

The free market, patent laws, and an enabling political environment led to the development of the economy which has supported innovation and enterprise by promoting funding of new projects and products. The economy provided an active market for new products and services which helped to promote competition between inventors to create new products. The patent law ensured that businesses do not create similar products which increased innovation instead of replication of products. The availability of funding such as the funding of Farnsworth to create the electronic television technology is an excellent example of an innovation that occurred due to the copyright law and availability of market.

In conclusion, the legal, political and economic factors over the years has facilitated the development of enterprise and innovation in the USA. Patents and an enabling political environment that did not meddle with small businesses promoted the success of the enterprise in the US. Leaders identified and supported innovation which has played a significant role in the growth of the US economy.


Kahin, Brian, and Christopher T. Hill. "United States: The need for continuity." ISSUES in Science and Technology 26, no. 3 (2010): 51-60.

May, Randolph J., and Seth Cooper. "The Constitutional Foundations of Intellectual Property." (2013).

Richardson, Sarah. "Fearlessly Free." AMERICAN HISTORY50, no. 5 (2015): 14-15.

Simons, Kenneth L., and Judith L. Walls. "USA's National Innovation System." Wiley Encyclopedia of Management (2015): 1-32.

Weingast, Barry R. "The economic role of political institutions: Market-preserving federalism and economic development." Journal of Law, Economics, & Organization (1995): 1-31.

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