Do younger Sleeping Beauties prefer a technological prince
In this paper we investigate recent Sleeping Beauties cited in patents (SB-SNPRs). We find that the increasing trend of the relative number of SBs stopped around 1998. Moreover, we find that the time lag between the publication year of the SB-SNPRs and their first citation in a patent is becoming shorter in recent years. Our observations also suggest that, on average, in the more recent years SBs are awakened increasingly earlier by a ‘technological prince’ rather than by a ‘scientific prince’. These observations suggest that SBs with technological importance are ‘discovered’ earlier in an application-oriented context. Then, because of this earlier recognized technological relevance, papers may be cited also earlier in a scientific context. Thus early recognized technological relevance may ‘prevent’ papers to become an SB. The scientific impact of Sleeping Beauties is generally not necessarily related to the technological importance of the SBs, as far as measured with number and impact of the citing patents. The analysis of the occurrence of inventor-author relations as well as the citation years of inventor-author patents suggest that the scientific awakening of Sleeping Beauties only rarely occurs by inventor-author self-citation.