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The Demise of Distance? The Declining Role of Physical Proximity for Knowledge Transmission

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  • DANIEL K. N. JOHNSON
  • ALYN SIRIPONG
  • AMY S. BROWN

Abstract

ABSTRACT The transmission of knowledge diminishes with physical distance, one factor explaining the geographic clustering of scientific and industrial activity. The authors investigate how those distances have stretched over time—between collaborating inventors, and between inventors and the technology that inspires them. While physical distance is still a factor, it is clear that its constraining effects have weakened, especially for particular types of innovators, technologies, and regions of the United States.

Suggested Citation

  • Daniel K. N. Johnson & Alyn Siripong & Amy S. Brown, 2006. "The Demise of Distance? The Declining Role of Physical Proximity for Knowledge Transmission," Growth and Change, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 37(1), pages 19-33, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:growch:v:37:y:2006:i:1:p:19-33
    DOI: 10.1111/j.1468-2257.2006.00304.x
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    File URL: https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1468-2257.2006.00304.x
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Bronwyn H. Hall & Adam B. Jaffe & Manuel Trajtenberg, 2001. "The NBER Patent Citation Data File: Lessons, Insights and Methodological Tools," NBER Working Papers 8498, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Adam B. Jaffe & Manuel Trajtenberg, 1996. "Flows of Knowledge from Universities and Federal Labs: Modeling the Flowof Patent Citations Over Time and Across Institutional and Geographic Boundari," NBER Working Papers 5712, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Gordon H. Hanson, 2000. "Scale Economies and the Geographic Concentration of Industry," NBER Working Papers 8013, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Riccardo Cappelli & Fabio Montobbio, 2016. "European Integration and Knowledge Flows across European Regions," Regional Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 50(4), pages 709-727, April.
    2. Autant-Bernard, Corinne & Fadairo, Muriel & Massard, Nadine, 2013. "Knowledge diffusion and innovation policies within the European regions: Challenges based on recent empirical evidence," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 42(1), pages 196-210.
    3. Daniels, Bryce & Johnson, Daniel K.N., 2019. "More where that came from: Induced innovation in the american oil and gas sectors," Resources Policy, Elsevier, vol. 64(C).
    4. Piergiuseppe Morone & Angela Frasca, 2007. "Innovazione, network di imprese e conoscenza: quale ruolo per la geographical proximity?," Quaderni DSEMS 04-2007, Dipartimento di Scienze Economiche, Matematiche e Statistiche, Universita' di Foggia.
    5. Eckey, Hans-Friedrich & Türck, Matthias, 2007. "Convergence of EU-Regions. A Literature Report," INVESTIGACIONES REGIONALES - Journal of REGIONAL RESEARCH, Asociación Española de Ciencia Regional, issue 10, pages 5-32.
    6. Motoyama, Yasuyuki & Cao, Cong & Appelbaum, Richard, 2014. "Observing regional divergence of Chinese nanotechnology centers," Technological Forecasting and Social Change, Elsevier, vol. 81(C), pages 11-21.
    7. Marina van Geenhuizen & Peter Nijkamp, 2011. "Knowledge Virtualization and Local Connectedness among Smart High-tech Companies," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 11-119/3, Tinbergen Institute.
    8. Robert Huggins & Andrew Johnston & Rebecca Steffenson, 2008. "Universities, knowledge networks and regional policy," Cambridge Journal of Regions, Economy and Society, Cambridge Political Economy Society, vol. 1(2), pages 321-340.
    9. Edward J. Malecki, 2010. "Everywhere? The Geography Of Knowledge," Journal of Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 50(1), pages 493-513, February.
    10. Grözinger, Nicola & Irlenbusch, Bernd & Laske, Katharina & Schröder, Marina, 2020. "Innovation and Communication Media in Virtual Teams – An Experimental Study," IZA Discussion Papers 13218, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    11. Anne Aguiléra & Virginie Lethiais, 2016. "Explaining the Relative Frequency of Face-to-face Meetings in Cooperative Relationships among Companies: An Econometric Analysis," Growth and Change, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 47(2), pages 218-235, June.
    12. Robert Huggins & Andrew Johnston, 2009. "Knowledge Networks in an Uncompetitive Region: SME Innovation and Growth," Growth and Change, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 40(2), pages 227-259, June.
    13. Sidonia Proff & Anja Dettmann, 2013. "Inventor collaboration over distance: a comparison of academic and corporate patents," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 94(3), pages 1217-1238, March.
    14. Powell, Walter W. & Giannella, Eric, 2010. "Collective Invention and Inventor Networks," Handbook of the Economics of Innovation, in: Bronwyn H. Hall & Nathan Rosenberg (ed.),Handbook of the Economics of Innovation, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 0, pages 575-605, Elsevier.
    15. Qiantao Zhang & Niall G. MacKenzie & Dylan Jones-Evans & Robert Huggins, 2016. "Leveraging knowledge as a competitive asset? The intensity, performance and structure of universities’ entrepreneurial knowledge exchange activities at a regional level," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 47(3), pages 657-675, October.
    16. Aju J. Fenn & Daniel K. N. Johnson & Mark Griffin Smith & J. L. Stimpert, 2010. "Doing Publishable Research with Undergraduate Students," The Journal of Economic Education, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 41(3), pages 259-274, June.

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