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When Micro Shapes the Meso: Learning Networks in a Chilean Wine Cluster

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Abstract

Most analyses of the relationship between spatial clustering and the technological learning of firms have emphasised the influence of the former on the latter, and have focused on intra-cluster learning as the driver of innovative performance. This paper reverses those perspectives. It examines the influence of individual firms' absorptive capacities on both the functioning of the intra-cluster knowledge system and its interconnection with extra-cluster knowledge. It applies social network analysis to identify different cognitive roles played by cluster firms and the overall structure of the knowledge system of a wine cluster in Chile. The results show that knowledge is not diffused evenly 'in the air', but flows within a core group of firms characterised by advanced absorptive capacities. Firms' different cognitive roles include some - as in the case of technological gatekeepers - that contribute actively to the acquisition, creation and diffusion of knowledge. Others remain cognitively isolated from the cluster, though in some cases strongly linked to extra-cluster knowledge. Possible implications for policy are noted.

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File URL: http://www.sussex.ac.uk/spru/documents/sewp115.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by SPRU - Science and Technology Policy Research, University of Sussex in its series SPRU Working Paper Series with number 115.

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Length: 36 pages
Date of creation: 01 Apr 2004
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published in Research Policy, Volume 34, Number 1, 2005, pp.47-68. (New title: The Micro-Determinants of Meso-Level Learning and Innovation: Evidence from a Chilean Wine Cluster)
Handle: RePEc:sru:ssewps:115

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Keywords: clusters; absorptive capacity; knowledge communities; technological gatekeepers;

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References

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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Elisa Giuliani, 2005. "The Structure of Cluster Knowledge Networks Uneven, not Pervasive and Collective," DRUID Working Papers 05-11, DRUID, Copenhagen Business School, Department of Industrial Economics and Strategy/Aalborg University, Department of Business Studies.
  2. Liu, Ju & Chaminade, Cristina, 2014. "Exploring the interplay, differences, and commonalities between global production networks and global innovation networks of two multinational companies," CIRCLE Electronic Working Papers 2014/7, Lund University, CIRCLE - Center for Innovation, Research and Competences in the Learning Economy.
  3. Andrea Morrison & Carlo Pietrobelli & Roberta Rabellotti, 2006. "Global Value Chains and Technological Capabilities: A Framework to Study Industrial Innovation in Developing Countries," KITeS Working Papers 192, KITeS, Centre for Knowledge, Internationalization and Technology Studies, Universita' Bocconi, Milano, Italy, revised Dec 2006.
  4. Chaminade, Cristina & de Fuentes, Claudia, 2012. "Competences as drivers and enablers of globalization of innovation: Swedish ICT industry and emerging economies," CIRCLE Electronic Working Papers 2012/6, Lund University, CIRCLE - Center for Innovation, Research and Competences in the Learning Economy.
  5. Abdirahman, Zam-Zam & Sauvee, Loic, 2011. "The Adoption of Quality Standards in Food SMEs: A Network Approach," 2011 International European Forum, February 14-18, 2011, Innsbruck-Igls, Austria 122026, International European Forum on Innovation and System Dynamics in Food Networks.
  6. Chaminade, Cristina & Vang, Jan, 2008. "Globalisation of knowledge production and regional innovation policy: Supporting specialized hubs in the Bangalore software industry," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 37(10), pages 1684-1696, December.
  7. Andrea Morrison, 2005. "Inside the Black Box of ‘Industrial Atmosphere’: Knowledge and Information Networks in an Italian wine local system," Working Papers 97, SEMEQ Department - Faculty of Economics - University of Eastern Piedmont.
  8. Abdirahman, Zam-Zam & Sauvee, Loic, 2012. "The Implementation of a Quality Management Standard in a Food SME: A Network Learning Perspective," International Journal on Food System Dynamics, International Center for Management, Communication, and Research, vol. 3(3).
  9. Andrea Morrison & Roberta Rabellotti, 2005. "Knowledge and Information Networks: Evidence from an Italian Wine Local System," KITeS Working Papers 174, KITeS, Centre for Knowledge, Internationalization and Technology Studies, Universita' Bocconi, Milano, Italy, revised Sep 2005.
  10. Elisa Giuliani, 2008. "What drives innovative output in emerging clusters? Evidence from the wine industry," SPRU Working Paper Series 169, SPRU - Science and Technology Policy Research, University of Sussex.

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