This paper contributes the literature on the knowledge generation function investigating the heterogeneity of sources of external knowledge and their differentiated effects on respectively process and product innovations. The analysis of the sources of technological knowledge enables to implement the distinction between within and among complementarity. Upstream vertical flows of external knowledge complement internal knowledge for the introduction of process innovations. Horizontal and vertical downstream flows of external knowledge complement the introduction of product innovations. The results of the empirical investigations confirm that external knowledge accessed by transactions-cum-interactions with upstream suppliers exerts a strong and positive role on the introduction of process innovations, while the access to external knowledge that flows horizontally within the same industry among competitors and vertically between producers and users has stronger effects on the introduction of product innovations. These results support the hypothesis that the matching between sources of external knowledge and types of innovation is necessary to implement successful innovation strategies and confirm that innovation should be regarded as an emergent system property: both its rate and its direction are in fact strongly influenced by the characteristics of the system.

THE ROLE OF EXTERNAL KNOWLEDGE(S) IN THE INTRODUCTION OF PRODUCT AND PROCESS INNOVATIONS

ANTONELLI, Cristiano;FASSIO, CLAUDIO
2016

Abstract

This paper contributes the literature on the knowledge generation function investigating the heterogeneity of sources of external knowledge and their differentiated effects on respectively process and product innovations. The analysis of the sources of technological knowledge enables to implement the distinction between within and among complementarity. Upstream vertical flows of external knowledge complement internal knowledge for the introduction of process innovations. Horizontal and vertical downstream flows of external knowledge complement the introduction of product innovations. The results of the empirical investigations confirm that external knowledge accessed by transactions-cum-interactions with upstream suppliers exerts a strong and positive role on the introduction of process innovations, while the access to external knowledge that flows horizontally within the same industry among competitors and vertically between producers and users has stronger effects on the introduction of product innovations. These results support the hypothesis that the matching between sources of external knowledge and types of innovation is necessary to implement successful innovation strategies and confirm that innovation should be regarded as an emergent system property: both its rate and its direction are in fact strongly influenced by the characteristics of the system.
46
October
979
991
Sources of technological knowledge; Product and process innovations; Within and Among complementarity
Cristiano, Antonelli; Claudio, Fassio
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/2318/1528131
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