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The adoption and adaptation of externally originated ideas


  • Fidel Perez-Sebastian

    () (Universidad Pública de Navarra, Departamento de Economía, 31006 Pamplona, Spain)


This paper presents a vintage-capital model of technology adoption that takes seriously the fact that new inventions are specific to the environment in which they emerge. The key feature of the model is that the firm can invest resources in R&D to adapt externally originated ideas to the environment in which they are used. We show that because of the possibility of investing in R&D, differences between the inventor's and user's environments can explain why some firms invest in old techniques. Several predictions of the model are consistent with observation.

Suggested Citation

  • Fidel Perez-Sebastian, 2000. "The adoption and adaptation of externally originated ideas," Spanish Economic Review, Springer;Spanish Economic Association, vol. 2(3), pages 249-266.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:specre:v:2:y:2000:i:3:p:249-266

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    R&D; adoption; adaptation; optimal timing;

    JEL classification:

    • D92 - Microeconomics - - Micro-Based Behavioral Economics - - - Intertemporal Firm Choice, Investment, Capacity, and Financing
    • O33 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Technological Change: Choices and Consequences; Diffusion Processes


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