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From 'industrial districts' to 'knowledge clusters': a model of knowledge dissemination and competitive advantage in industrial agglomerations

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Author Info

  • Steven Pinch
  • Nick Henry
  • Mark Jenkins
  • Stephen Tallman
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    Abstract

    This paper integrates knowledge-based theories of the firm with geograph-ical studies of industrial agglomeration to produce a model that helps explain the competitive advantages enjoyed by proximate firms located in geographical clusters. We propose a hierarchy of specialized knowledge stocks at both firm and cluster levels and suggest that the comparative advantage conferred by knowledge resources at each level is protected, in part, by asymmetries in knowledge flows from level to level. The paper argues that codified component knowledge is more easily spread than firm-specific architectural knowledge. Nevertheless, over time, agglomerations may develop a cluster-specific form of architectural knowledge that facilitates the rapid dissemination of knowledge throughout the cluster by increasing the learning capacity of proximate firms and thereby conferring cluster-specific competitive advantages. Copyright 2003, Oxford University Press.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Oxford University Press in its journal Journal of Economic Geography.

    Volume (Year): 3 (2003)
    Issue (Month): 4 (October)
    Pages: 373-388

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    Handle: RePEc:oup:jecgeo:v:3:y:2003:i:4:p:373-388

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    Postal: Oxford University Press, Great Clarendon Street, Oxford OX2 6DP, UK
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    Web: http://www.oup.co.uk/journals

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    Cited by:
    1. Hallin, Christina & Holm, Ulf & Sharma, Dharma Deo, 2011. "Embeddedness of innovation receivers in the multinational corporation: Effects on business performance," International Business Review, Elsevier, vol. 20(3), pages 362-373, June.
    2. Ron Martin & Peter Sunley, 2007. "Complexity Thinking and Evolutionary Economic Geography," Papers in Evolutionary Economic Geography (PEEG) 0703, Utrecht University, Section of Economic Geography, revised Apr 2007.
    3. Gurrieri, Antonia Rosa, 2008. "Knowledge network dissemination in a family-firm sector," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 37(6), pages 2380-2389, December.
    4. Piergiuseppe Morone & Giuseppina Testa, 2005. "What Makes Small and Medium Enterprises Competitive," Quaderni DSEMS 18-2005, Dipartimento di Scienze Economiche, Matematiche e Statistiche, Universita' di Foggia.
    5. Manuel Portugal Ferreira & Fernando Ribeiro Serra & Benny Kramer Costa & Emerson Maccari & Hergos Couto, 2013. "Impact of the types of clusters on the innovation output and the appropriation of rents from innovation," Working Papers 102, globADVANTAGE, Polytechnic Institute of Leiria.
    6. Hogenbirk,Annelies & Narula,Rajneesh, 2004. "Location and agglomeration of FDI in The Netherlands: implications for policy," Research Memorandum 006, Maastricht University, Maastricht Economic Research Institute on Innovation and Technology (MERIT).
    7. Casanueva, Cristóbal & Castro, Ignacio & Galán, José L., 2013. "Informational networks and innovation in mature industrial clusters," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 66(5), pages 603-613.

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