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Technological Innovation in Telecommunications: An Empirical Analysis of Specialisation Paths

  • Paola Garrone
  • Sergio Mariotti
  • Francesca Sgobbi

Are advanced countries bound to follow a specialisation path in their innovation activities? This paper contributes to the issue by analysing the dynamic of innovation activities in telecommunications (TLCs) at the country level. Our claim is that countries are more likely to innovate in a product class if they have invented the dominant design in that class, or in classes that are similar for technological principles or engineering competencies. The research hypothesis has been empirically tested for the innovation activities of four European countries between 1978 and 1995. Data are drawn from the patents granted by the US Patents and Trademarks Office in the devices and systems for public TLCs networks. Based on cross-tabulation and VAR econometric models, we conclude that, in TLCs, advanced countries are unlikely to join technological trajectories started abroad; in particular, we have shown that innovation paths are engineering-specific, though they may cross the boundaries between basic technological principles. In addition, for our sample countries, preliminary evidence has been yielded that the TLCs innovation activities are independent of the demand dynamics.

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Article provided by Taylor & Francis Journals in its journal Economics of Innovation and New Technology.

Volume (Year): 11 (2002)
Issue (Month): 1 ()
Pages: 1-23

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Handle: RePEc:taf:ecinnt:v:11:y:2002:i:1:p:1-23
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