Brokerage in SME networks
This study focuses on SME networks of design and high-tech companies in Southeast Netherlands. By highlighting the personal networks of members across design and high-tech industries, the study attempts to identify the main brokers in this dynamic environment. In addition, we investigate whether specific characteristics are associated with these brokers. The main contribution of the paper lies in the fact that, in contrast to most other work, it is of a quantitative nature and focuses on brokers identified in an actual network. Studying the phenomenon of brokerage provides us with clear insights into the concept of brokerage regarding SME networks in different fields. In particular we highlight how third parties contribute to the transfer and development of knowledge. Empirical results show, among others, that the most influential brokers are found in the non-profit and science sector and have a long track record in their branch.
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