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Growing by Leaps and Inches: Creative Destruction, Real Cost Reduction, and Inching Up

Author

Listed:
  • Michael R. Darby

    () (Anderson Graduate School of Management, UCLA Box 951481, Los Angeles, CA 90095.)

  • Lynne G. Zucker

    () (UCLA Box 951551, Los Angeles, CA 90095.)

Abstract

Most firms achieve perfective progress, incrementally improving commodities or productivity. But technological progress is concentrated in a few firms achieving metamorphic progress: forming or transforming industries with technological breakthroughs (e.g., biotechnology, lasers, semiconductors, nanotechnology). Unless congruent with incumbents' science and technology base, metamorphic progress promotes entry. Scientific breakthroughs embodied in discovering scientists, protected by natural excludability and transferred by learning-by-doing-with at the bench generally drive metamorphic progress. Embodied knowledge is rivalrous and leads to entry and industry dominance by star scientist--linked firms. Incorporating this scientific entrepreneurial process is essential to improving--if not transforming--endogenous growth models. Copyright 2003, Oxford University Press.

Suggested Citation

  • Michael R. Darby & Lynne G. Zucker, 2003. "Growing by Leaps and Inches: Creative Destruction, Real Cost Reduction, and Inching Up," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 41(1), pages 1-19, January.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:ecinqu:v:41:y:2003:i:1:p:1-19
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Richard Jensen & Marie Thursby, 1998. "Proofs and Prototypes for Sale: The Tale of University Licensing," NBER Working Papers 6698, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    12. Michael R. Darby & Lynne G. Zucker, 2002. "Going Public When You Can in Biotechnology," NBER Working Papers 8954, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    Cited by:

    1. Russell S. Sobel & Andrea M Dean, 2008. "Has Wal-Mart Buried Mom And Pop?: The Impact Of Wal-Mart On Self-Employment And Small Establishments In The United States," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 46(4), pages 676-695, October.
    2. Bao, Xiaolu & Johan, Sofia & Kutsuna, Kenji, 2016. "Do political connections matter in accessing capital markets? Evidence from China," Emerging Markets Review, Elsevier, vol. 29(C), pages 24-41.
    3. Michael Storper & Anthony J. Venables, 2004. "Buzz: face-to-face contact and the urban economy," Journal of Economic Geography, Oxford University Press, vol. 4(4), pages 351-370, August.
    4. Michael R. Darby & Lynne G. Zucker, 2006. "Innovation, Competition and Welfare-Enhancing Monopoly," NBER Working Papers 12094, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. Ouimet, Paige & Zarutskie, Rebecca, 2014. "Who works for startups? The relation between firm age, employee age, and growth," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 112(3), pages 386-407.
    6. Lynne G. Zucker & Michael R. Darby & Jeff S. Armstrong, 2003. "Commercializing knowledge: university science, knowledge capture and firm performance in biotechnology," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, issue Sep, pages 149-170.
    7. Chava, Sudheer & Oettl, Alexander & Subramanian, Ajay & Subramanian, Krishnamurthy V., 2013. "Banking deregulation and innovation," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 109(3), pages 759-774.
    8. John V. Duca & Mine K. YĆ¼cel, 2002. "An overview of science and cents: exploring the economics of biotechnology," Economic and Financial Policy Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas.
    9. Lynne G. Zucker & Michael R. Darby, 2009. "Star Scientists, Innovation and Regional and National Immigration," Chapters,in: Entrepreneurship and Openness, chapter 6 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    10. Michael R. Darby & Lynne G. Zucker & Andrew Wang, 2004. "Joint Ventures, Universities, and Success in the Advanced Technology Program," Contemporary Economic Policy, Western Economic Association International, vol. 22(2), pages 145-161, April.
    11. repec:eee:respol:v:47:y:2018:i:2:p:440-461 is not listed on IDEAS
    12. Wang, Ning & Hagedoorn, John, 2014. "The lag structure of the relationship between patenting and internal R&D revisited," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 43(8), pages 1275-1285.
    13. Michael R. Darby & Lynne G. Zucker & Andrew Wang, 2003. "Universities, Joint Ventures, and Success in the Advanced Technology Program," NBER Working Papers 9463, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • O30 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - General
    • L11 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Production, Pricing, and Market Structure; Size Distribution of Firms

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