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National innovation systems, firm strategy, and enabling mobile communications: the case of Nokia


  • Thomas R. Leinbach
  • Stanley D. Brunn


An important element of the growing e-economy is the emergence of firms in the telecommunications sector and the ways in which these are evolving, competing and attempting to capture markets based on strategic goals. A key aspect is the 'wireless' or 'mobile' telephony phenomenon, which has attracted users across the globe and is gaining importance as new developments linking it to the internet are realised. Utilising the perspectives of competitive advantage and national innovation systems theory, our work examines the evolution of Nokia's mobile phones and mobile, fixed and internet protocol (IP) networks divisions. The success of the firm can be attributed to a variety of factors. Among the most important are employment of the innovative industrial cluster concept, networking, and state promotion of an emerging information and communication technology (ICT) cluster through the liberalisation of the telephony market. Within the firm itself identification of core competencies (digital signal processing, electronics manufacturing, software platforms and architectures) and the development of niche markets has been important. A major factor in the success has been the ability to evolve technology and to place leading edge innovative products in the market in a timely fashion. Copyright Royal Dutch Geographical Society 2002.

Suggested Citation

  • Thomas R. Leinbach & Stanley D. Brunn, 2002. "National innovation systems, firm strategy, and enabling mobile communications: the case of Nokia," Tijdschrift voor Economische en Sociale Geografie, Royal Dutch Geographical Society KNAG, vol. 93(5), pages 489-508, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:tvecsg:v:93:y:2002:i:5:p:489-508

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