Self-Organizing Inter-Firm Networks
AbstractSome industries are characterised by networks of small and specialized firms with porous boundaries, while in some other industries large diversified hierarchies with concrete boundaries are a more dominant form of organization. Some other industries are combinations of these. In this paper, a simulation study is performed to explore whether, and if so how the characteristics of knowledge base influences emerging organizational structures. We focus on two dimensions of the knowledge base; breadth and depth. We define breadth of knowledge base to be the number of different knowledge types required for production, while depth refers to the extent of dominance of a single type. In the simulation study, self-interested agents form pairs to integrate their knowledge and produce together under different schemes of the knowledge base. In this way networks form. Resulting network structures are analysed to gain an insight into organizational structures that emerge. Networks are also partitioned into cohesive subgroups as proxies for the firm, and their structural characteristics are analysed. The results of the simulation study reveal that, network-based industries are likely to emerge when the products in an industry are highly specialized (employing one knowledge type intensively), but still when they have some knowledge types in common, although minor in the production process. This is the case with a broad and deep knowledge base.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Maastricht : MERIT, Maastricht Economic Research Institute on Innovation and Technology in its series Research Memoranda with number 022.
Date of creation: 2003
Date of revision:
Contact details of provider:
Web page: http://www.maastrichtuniversity.nl/web/UMPublications.htm
industrial organization ;
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2003-12-14 (All new papers)
- NEP-CBE-2003-12-14 (Cognitive & Behavioural Economics)
- NEP-CMP-2003-12-14 (Computational Economics)
- NEP-ENT-2003-12-14 (Entrepreneurship)
- NEP-INO-2003-12-14 (Innovation)
- NEP-TID-2003-12-14 (Technology & Industrial Dynamics)
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- DeBresson, Chris & Amesse, Fernand, 1991. "Networks of innovators :A review and introduction to the issue," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 20(5), pages 363-379, October.
- Lazerson, Mark H & Lorenzoni, Gianni, 1999. "The Firms That Feed Industrial Districts: A Return to the Italian," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 8(2), pages 235-66, June.
- Orsenigo, L. & Pammolli, F. & Riccaboni, Massimo, 2001. "Technological change and network dynamics: Lessons from the pharmaceutical industry," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 30(3), pages 485-508, March.
- Patel, Pari & Pavitt, Keith, 1997. "The technological competencies of the world's largest firms: Complex and path-dependent, but not much variety," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 26(2), pages 141-156, May.
- Luigi Orsenigo & Fabio Pammolli & Massimo Riccaboni & Andrea Bonaccorsi & Giuseppe Turchetti, 1997. "The Evolution of Knowledge and the Dynamics of an Industry Network," Journal of Management and Governance, Springer, vol. 1(2), pages 147-175, June.
- R. Luce & Albert Perry, 1949. "A method of matrix analysis of group structure," Psychometrika, Springer, vol. 14(2), pages 95-116, June.
- Saxenian, AnnaLee, 1991. "The origins and dynamics of production networks in Silicon Valley," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 20(5), pages 423-437, October.
- Teece, David J. & Rumelt, Richard & Dosi, Giovanni & Winter, Sidney, 1994. "Understanding corporate coherence : Theory and evidence," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 23(1), pages 1-30, January.
- Langlois, Richard N. & Robertson, Paul L., 1992. "Networks and innovation in a modular system: Lessons from the microcomputer and stereo component industries," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 21(4), pages 297-313, August.
- Granstrand, Ove & Sjolander, Soren, 1990. "Managing innovation in multi-technology corporations," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 19(1), pages 35-60, February.
- Allen, Robert C., 1983. "Collective invention," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 4(1), pages 1-24, March.
- Wang, Q. & von Tunzelmann, N., 2000. "Complexity and the functions of the firm: breadth and depth," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 29(7-8), pages 805-818, August.
- Zirulia,Lorenzo, 2004. "The evolution of R&D networks," Research Memoranda 007, Maastricht : MERIT, Maastricht Economic Research Institute on Innovation and Technology.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Charles Bollen).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.