IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/oup/indcch/v7y1998i2p217-47.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

The Slow Pace of Rapid Technological Change: Gradualism and Punctuation in Technological Change

Author

Listed:
  • Levinthal, Daniel A

Abstract

Discussions of technological change have offered sharply contrasting perspectives of technological change as gradual or incremental and the image of technological change as being rapid, even discontinuous. These alternative perspectives are bridged using the punctuated equilibrium framework of evolutionary biology. Using this framework, it is argued that the critical event is not a transformation of the technology, but speciation--the application of existing technology to a new domain of application. As a result of the distinct selection criteria and the degree of resource abundance in the new domain, a new technological form may emerge. The new technological form may be able to penetrate other niches and, in particular, may precipitate a process of 'creative destruction' and out-compete prior technologies. This framework is applied to an historical study of wireless communication from the early experimental efforts of Hertz to the modern development of wireless telephony. Copyright 1998 by Oxford University Press.

Suggested Citation

  • Levinthal, Daniel A, 1998. "The Slow Pace of Rapid Technological Change: Gradualism and Punctuation in Technological Change," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 7(2), pages 217-247, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:indcch:v:7:y:1998:i:2:p:217-47
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    To our knowledge, this item is not available for download. To find whether it is available, there are three options:
    1. Check below whether another version of this item is available online.
    2. Check on the provider's web page whether it is in fact available.
    3. Perform a search for a similarly titled item that would be available.

    More about this item

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:oup:indcch:v:7:y:1998:i:2:p:217-47. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Oxford University Press) or (Christopher F. Baum). General contact details of provider: https://academic.oup.com/icc .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.