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The Spatial Diffusion of a Knowledge Base-Laser Technology Research in West Germany, 1960-2005

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  • Michael Fritsch

    ()
    (School of Economics and Business Administration, Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena)

  • Luis F. Medrano

    ()
    (Friedrich Schiller University Jena, School of Economics and Business Administration)

Abstract

We analyze the spatial diffusion of knowledge in laser technology in West Germany from 1960, when this technology began, until 2005. Laser technology research has been nearly exclusively conducted in regions that are home to a university with a physics or electrical engineering department, an indication of the science-based character of the technology. Early adoption of laser knowledge was especially prevalent in large agglomerations. While we cannot detect knowledge spillovers from adjacent regions, geographic proximity to the center of initial laser research was conducive to early adoption of laser research; however, the effect is small. The earlier a region embarked on this type of research, the higher the level of laser research later, indicating the accumulation of knowledge generated in previous periods. Our results highlight the role of a region's absorptive capacity for commencing and conducting research in a new technological field. In the case of laser technology, it was more the level of existing tacit knowledge than an interregional transfer of tacit knowledge that played an important role.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena, Max-Planck-Institute of Economics in its series Jena Economic Research Papers with number 2010-048.

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Date of creation: 04 Aug 2010
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Handle: RePEc:jrp:jrpwrp:2010-048

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Keywords: Innovation; regional innovation systems; knowledge; spatial diffusion; laser technology;

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  1. Ron A. Boschma & Rik Wenting, 2004. "The spatial evolution of the British automobile industry," Papers in Evolutionary Economic Geography (PEEG) 0504, Utrecht University, Section of Economic Geography, revised Aug 2004.
  2. Joseph Hilbe, 1994. "Negative binomial regression," Stata Technical Bulletin, StataCorp LP, vol. 3(18).
  3. Mario Cleves & William W. Gould & Roberto G. Gutierrez & Yulia Marchenko, 2010. "An Introduction to Survival Analysis Using Stata," Stata Press books, StataCorp LP, edition 3, number saus3, July.
  4. Guido Buenstorf, 2006. "Evolution on the Shoulders of Giants: Entrepreneurship and Firm Survival in the German Laser Industry," Papers on Economics and Evolution 2005-20, Max Planck Institute of Economics, Evolutionary Economics Group.
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Cited by:
  1. Muhamed Kudic & Andreas Pyka & Marco Sunder, 2013. "Network Formation: R&D Cooperation Propensity and Timing Among German Laser Source Manufacturers," IWH Discussion Papers 9, Halle Institute for Economic Research.
  2. Luis F. Medrano E., 2012. "Patent Citations, University Inventor Patents, and Survival in the German Laser Source Industry (1960-2005)," Jena Economic Research Papers 2012-009, Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena, Max-Planck-Institute of Economics.
  3. Muhamed Kudic & Katja Guhr, 2013. "Cooperation Events, Ego-Network Characteristics and Firm Innovativeness – Empirical Evidence from the German Laser Industry," IWH Discussion Papers 6, Halle Institute for Economic Research.
  4. Muhamed Kudic & Andreas Pyka & Jutta Günther, 2012. "Determinants of Evolutionary Change Processes in Innovation Networks – Empirical Evidence from the German Laser Industry," IWH Discussion Papers 7, Halle Institute for Economic Research.

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