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Proximity and the Evolution of Collaboration Networks: Evidence from R&D Projects within the GNSS Industry

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  • Pierre-Alexandre Balland

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Abstract

Increasing attention had been given recently to understand how networks affect organizational performance in innovation studies. Surprisingly, underlying mechanisms of their evolution have been more neglected, and still remain unclear. This lack of interest is denounced today by recent papers which claim that it is a crucial issue for economic geography. Especially the influence of different forms of proximity on the networkÌs changes needs to be clarified. This paper contributes to this ongoing debate by determining empirically how organizations choose their partners given to their geographical, organizational, institutional, cognitive and social proximity. The relational database is constructed from publicly available information on the R&D collaborative projects of the 6th European Union Framework Program within the navigation by satellite industry (GNSS). Patterns of evolution of the GNSS collaboration network are determined according to a longitudinal study of the relational changes occurred between four consecutive years, from 2004 to 2007. Empirical results show that geographical, organizational and institutional proximity favour collaboration. Inversely, organizations prefer to avoid partnerships when they share a cognitive proximity (same knowledge bases). The last result demonstrates that the kind of project studied does not create a sufficient level of social proximity to stimulate collaboration.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Utrecht University, Section of Economic Geography in its series Papers in Evolutionary Economic Geography (PEEG) with number 0914.

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Length: 27 pages
Date of creation: Oct 2009
Date of revision: Oct 2009
Handle: RePEc:egu:wpaper:0914

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Related research

Keywords: proximity; collaboration networks; innovation; network longitudinal analysis; R&D collaborative projects; SIENA;

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Cited by:
  1. Pierre-Alexandre Balland & Mathijs de Vaan & Ron Boschma, 2011. "The Dynamics of Interfirm Networks along the Industry Life Cycle: The Case of the Global Video Games Industry 1987-2007," Papers in Evolutionary Economic Geography (PEEG) 1114, Utrecht University, Section of Economic Geography, revised Aug 2011.
  2. Ron Boschma & Dirk Fornahl, 2011. "Cluster Evolution and a Roadmap for Future Research," Regional Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 45(10), pages 1295-1298, November.
  3. Joan Crespo & Raphaël Suire & Jérôme Vicente, 2013. "Network structural properties for cluster long run dynamics. Evidence from collaborative R&D networks in the European mobile phone industry," Economics Working Paper Archive (University of Rennes 1 & University of Caen) 201336, Center for Research in Economics and Management (CREM), University of Rennes 1, University of Caen and CNRS.
  4. Emmanouil Tranos & Peter Nijkamp, 2013. "The Death Of Distance Revisited: Cyber-Place, Physical And Relational Proximities," Journal of Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 53(5), pages 855-873, December.
  5. Cilem Selin Hazir, 2011. "Conceptualizing the Role of Geographical Proximity in Project Based R&D Networks: A Literature Survey," ERSA conference papers ersa11p1616, European Regional Science Association.
  6. Ron Boschma & KOen Frenken, 2010. "The emerging empirics of evolutionary economic geography," Eindhoven Center for Innovation Studies (ECIS) working paper series 10-10, Eindhoven Center for Innovation Studies (ECIS), revised Nov 2010.
  7. Tom Broekel & Ron Boschma, 2012. "Knowledge networks in the Dutch aviation industry: the proximity paradox," Journal of Economic Geography, Oxford University Press, vol. 12(2), pages 409-433, March.
  8. Rachel LEVY (LEREPS) & Damien TALBOT (GREThA UMR CNRS 5113), 2010. "Control by proximity: evidence from Aerospace Valley competitiveness cluster (In French)," Cahiers du GREThA 2010-08, Groupe de Recherche en Economie Théorique et Appliquée.
  9. Cilem Selin Hazir & Corinne Autant-Bernard, 2012. "Using Affiliation Networks to Study the Determinants of Multilateral Research Cooperation Some empirical evidence from EU Framework Programs in biotechnology," Working Papers 1212, Groupe d'Analyse et de Théorie Economique (GATE), Centre national de la recherche scientifique (CNRS), Université Lyon 2, Ecole Normale Supérieure.
  10. E. Marrocu & S. Usai & R. Paci, 2013. "Networks, proximities and inter-firm knowledge exchanges," Working Paper CRENoS 201311, Centre for North South Economic Research, University of Cagliari and Sassari, Sardinia.
  11. Ron Boschma & Pierre-Alexandre Balland & Dieter Kogler, 2011. "A relational approach to knowledge spillovers in biotech. Network structures as drivers of inter-organizational citation patterns," Papers in Evolutionary Economic Geography (PEEG) 1120, Utrecht University, Section of Economic Geography, revised Dec 2011.
  12. Tom Broekel & Ron Boschma, 2011. "The cognitive and geographical composition of ego-networks of firms – and how they impact on their innovation performance," Papers in Evolutionary Economic Geography (PEEG) 1118, Utrecht University, Section of Economic Geography, revised Aug 2011.

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