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External knowledge sourcing in biotechnology through acquisition versus alliance: A KBV approach

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  • Carayannopoulos, Sofy
  • Auster, Ellen R.

Abstract

Knowledge sourcing is important for firms, especially in fast-paced industries. However, few studies explore the effects of knowledge-based predictors on the comparative choice of employing acquisitions versus alliances for sourcing external knowledge. This study extends the limited existing research on this topic. It simultaneously examines the effects of knowledge domain attributes, seeker and source experience-based knowledge, and dyad knowledge similarity and digestibility on whether a firm chooses an acquisition or alliance when sourcing external knowledge. Data is comprised of 209 research-driven acquisitions and alliances of biotechnology firms based in North America. Our findings reveal that external knowledge sourcing through acquisition is more likely when the knowledge domain is more complex and valuable. Acquisition is also preferred when the seeker has greater acquisition experience and when the source has accumulated a moderate level of alliance experience. Alliance, in contrast, is the chosen mode for accessing external knowledge when the knowledge is high in specificity and when the seeker has prior alliance experience. In addition, increasing similarity and digestibility of the dyad's knowledge bases strengthen the relationship between knowledge value and the probability of acquisition versus alliance. These results extend understanding of how firms decide to augment their knowledge resources in a knowledge-intensive industry. They also demonstrate that a multilevel KBV approach emphasizing knowledge characteristics uncovers important predictors of strategy and structure in research-driven organizations.

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  • Carayannopoulos, Sofy & Auster, Ellen R., 2010. "External knowledge sourcing in biotechnology through acquisition versus alliance: A KBV approach," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 39(2), pages 254-267, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:respol:v:39:y:2010:i:2:p:254-267
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    Cited by:

    1. Bidault, Francis & Hildebrand, Thomas, 2014. "The distribution of partnership returns: Evidence from co-authorships in economics journals," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 43(6), pages 1002-1013.
    2. Raphael Greiner & Siah Ang, 2012. "Biotechnology collaborations: does business model matter?," Journal of Management & Governance, Springer;Accademia Italiana di Economia Aziendale (AIDEA), vol. 16(3), pages 377-392, August.
    3. Kwangsoo Shin & Gunno Park & Jae Young Choi & Minkyung Choy, 2017. "Factors Affecting the Survival of SMEs: A Study of Biotechnology Firms in South Korea," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 9(1), pages 1-18, January.
    4. Francis Bidault & Thomas Hildebrand, 2012. "The distribution of partnerships benefits: Evidence from co-authorships in economics journals," ESMT Research Working Papers ESMT-12-08, ESMT European School of Management and Technology.
    5. Marcela Miozzo & Lori DiVito & Panos Desyllas, 2011. "Cross-border acquisitions of science-based firms: Their effect on innovation in the acquired firm and the local science," DRUID Working Papers 11-17, DRUID, Copenhagen Business School, Department of Industrial Economics and Strategy/Aalborg University, Department of Business Studies.
    6. Woltering-Lamers, Philipp, 2011. "Die sequenzielle Organisationswahl: Kooperationen als Vorstufe von Akquisitionen," Arbeitspapiere 122, University of Münster, Institute for Cooperatives.
    7. Peeters, T.J.G., 2013. "External knowledge search and use in new product development," Other publications TiSEM 300ebb34-b090-4210-b95e-f, Tilburg University, School of Economics and Management.
    8. Yuandi Wang & Zhao Zhou & Jason Li-Ying, 2013. "The impact of licensed-knowledge attributes on the innovation performance of licensee firms: evidence from the Chinese electronic industry," The Journal of Technology Transfer, Springer, vol. 38(5), pages 699-715, October.
    9. Gunno Park & Jina Kang, 2014. "Effect of Alliance Experience on New Alliance Formations and Internal R&D Capabilities," TEMEP Discussion Papers 2014119, Seoul National University; Technology Management, Economics, and Policy Program (TEMEP), revised Sep 2014.
    10. Chiara Franco & Alberto Marzucchi & Sandro Montresor, 2011. "The "potential" face of absorptive capacity. An empirical investigation for an area of 3 European countries," Openloc Working Papers 1106, Public policies and local development.
    11. Kwangsoo Shin & Sang Ji Kim & Gunno Park, 2016. "How does the partner type in R&D alliances impact technological innovation performance? A study on the Korean biotechnology industry," Asia Pacific Journal of Management, Springer, vol. 33(1), pages 141-164, March.
    12. Jian Hou & Heng Chen & Jianzhong Xu, 2017. "External Knowledge Sourcing and Green Innovation Growth with Environmental and Energy Regulations: Evidence from Manufacturing in China," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 9(3), pages 1-17, February.
    13. Peng, Mike W. & Lee, Seung-Hyun & Hong, Sungjin J., 2014. "Entrepreneurs as intermediaries," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, vol. 49(1), pages 21-31.
    14. Wang, Chun-Hsien & Chang, Ching-Hsing & Shen, George C., 2015. "The effect of inbound open innovation on firm performance: Evidence from high-tech industry," Technological Forecasting and Social Change, Elsevier, vol. 99(C), pages 222-230.
    15. Wua, Pei-Ju & Fenga, Cheng-Min & Pana, Ya-Chuan, 2011. "Decisions about entry modes for telecom companies into digital music business: An empirical case study," 8th ITS Asia-Pacific Regional Conference, Taipei 2011: Convergence in the Digital Age 52342, International Telecommunications Society (ITS).

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